The public is invited to a piano concert performed by Tomoatsu Sakabe of Japan from 10-11:30 a.m. Saturday at the Hawaii Japanese Center, 751 Kanoelehua Ave., in Hilo. The title of the concert is “Sound of Peace 2014: A Joyful Concert.”
“Mr. Sakabe is a gifted pianist who is remarkable because he did not begin playing the piano until he was 17 years old and has only had one year of formal music training,” said HJC spokeswoman Gina Hara Chun. “He is doubly remarkable because his premature birth in 1980 resulted in a number of physical challenges, not the least of which is his blindness. Despite these roadblocks, he learned to express himself through his music.
“The variety of audiences who have been fortunate to hear him are impressed by the purity of his sound and they frequently comment on how his music seems to reflect the purity of his attitude toward people. He plays at churches, hospitals, care homes, hospices, kindergartens and facilities for people with handicaps, in addition to his regular concerts and radio station performances.
“The amazing thing, is that the music will be played on the center’s 1867 piano. We don’t ever use it, as it’s so fragile, so it’s definitely a special event.”
The concert is free, but seating is limited. To reserve a seat or for more information, call the center at 934-9611 by Tuesday.