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Yukihiro Isso

Photo: Taku Imai

Born into a familiy of Japanese Noh flute of Isso School (hayashi-kata fue-kata) which has been playing the instrument since the 16th century, Yukihiro received his initial instruction in Nohkan flute playing from his late father and master Yukimasa Isso . His first Noh stage performance was when he was nine years old. 

Yukihiro’s diverse interest and love of music has led him to perform western music, particularly baroque, jazz and world music. Yukihiro has a deserved reputation for improvisation. He is associated with many different forms of the performing arts and has collaborated with top performers in several diverse fields including Cecil Tailor (Jazz piano), Evan Parker (sax), Roger Turner ( percussions), John Edwards (bass), Min Tanaka (butoh dance), Mansai Nomura (kyogen), Kaiji Moriyama (contemporary dance), Kaori Muraji (guitar), as well as the Saltzburg Mozaruteum (Octet).

In 2011 Yukihiro performed Ikuma Dan’s Symphony No. 6 Hiroshima for soprano, nohkan, shinobue and orchestra (1985) with the Yomiuri Symphony Orchestra conducted by Tatsuya Shimono, which went on to receive the 24th Music Pen Club Award (Classical Music Section).

In 2012 Yukihiro started his concert series “Let’s Go to Noh Theatre”, aiming to encourage Japanese audiences to enjoy the experience of Noh theatre. Yukihiro recently appeared in music clubs in London at Café OTO, IKLECTIK and The Victoria in Hackney (Neoclassical) and took London audiences by surprise with his improvisation skill and simultaneous playing of 5 flutes.



London Jazz Review, 4th Feb 2016 at Café OTO

The Wire Magazine May 2016 issue.

The live recording with Roger Turner on 23rd Sep 2015 was released as  “ Takanehishigu” from OTO ROKU label.

In May 2016, as part of the production and curation of Mu:Arts, Isso successfully programmed and delivered the first edition of Noh Reimagined festival at Kings Place, exploring innovative inter-cultural collaborations with British artists in May 2016 with outstanding success.

As a classical Noh performer, Isso is an Important Intangible Cultural Asset designated by the Japanese government.

Yukihiro Isso official website (Japanese)






In tribute of FRANS BRUGGEN

From Let’s Go to Noh Theatre concert series No3

From Let’s Go to Noh Theatre concert series No2