Жанна Крючкова
Основатель альманаха Huxleў, фонда «Интеллектуальный капитал»
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MARCEL PROUST’S QUESTIONNAIRE: Daishin Kashimoto, «violin of the rising sun» from Berlin, about the open-minded world

MARCEL PROUST'S QUESTIONNAIRE: Daishin Kashimoto, «violin of the rising sun» from Berlin, about the open-minded world
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Photo: A. Savin / wikipedia.org


It’s not every day that we see legendary names gracing Ukrainian concert posters. Daishin Kashimoto is one of them. The first violin of the Berlin Philharmonic, a world-renowned virtuoso violinist… Kashimoto has become a long-awaited guest on the stage of the National Philharmonic of Ukraine.

His arrival was planned by the organizers as a part of the Beethoven’s anniversary, which was celebrated by the whole world in December 2020. Unfortunately, the pandemic has made serious adjustments to these plans.

Therefore, the concert in Kiev on the 20th of October of this year can be considered a real miracle and great luck for all Ukrainian connoisseurs of classical music. And it became possible thanks to the incredible efforts, desire and energy of the art director and the conductor of the New Era Orchestra Tatiana Kalinichenko.

As a result, Ukraine heard a fantastic performance of the Eighth Symphony and Concerto for Violin and Orchestra by Ludwig van Beethoven, which was presented to us by Kashimoto and the New Era Orchestra.


Not only Kashimoto’s musical talent, but also his biography deserves attention. It is the story of a child prodigy, generously gifted from above, who gradually reaches the pinnacle of excellence.

He started to play the violin at the age of three. At six, he moved with his parents from London to New York and became one of the most talented and at the same time the youngest pupils of the legendary Juilliard School in its history.

Then there was a world tour, the talent of the young genius was applauded by concert halls in dozens of countries around the world. At the age of 11, Kashimoto began to live in Germany in order to be able to study with the great violinist and the outstanding perfectionist teacher Zakhar Nukhimovich Bron.

We can say that Bron was a specialist in the education of wunderkinds. The world fame of such stellar violinists as Vadim Repin and Maxim Vengerov also began with the lessons of Zakhar Nukhimovich. Today, 42-year-old Daishin Kashimoto no longer looks like a «miracle boy». But his magic violin — the Guarneri of 1674 — still works wonders.

Behind him are prestigious competitions and partnerships with such representatives of the world musical Olympus as conductors Seiji Ozawa, Myung-Whun Chung, Lorin Maazel, Simon Rattle, Andris Nelsons, the pianist Itamar Golan, the violinist Gidon Kremer, the cellist Misha Maisky… Ukraine can rightfully be proud of the fact that among these luminaries the Ukrainian star, the New Era Orchestra of Tatiana Kalinichenko, shines no less brightly today.

Of course, Huxley could not miss such an outstanding musical event and such a legendary performer. We offer our readers a blitz interview with Daishin Kashimoto, who, according to the tradition of our almanac, answers the questions of the Questionnaire of Marcel Proust.

However, the intrigue does not end there — our editorial team is preparing a large detailed interview with the «violin of the rising sun,» as music critics sometimes call it. Therefore, very soon we will go on a fascinating journey with you, in which we will be accompanied by the violinist Daishin Kashimoto, a «miracle boy» who has become a great master.


Through art alone are we able to emerge from ourselves, to know what another person sees of a universe


Marcel Proust


The most important trait of your character…

I always try to maintain a playful and joyful frame of mind. I am extremely rarely in a bad mood.


What qualities do you value in men?

Decency in a relationship. It is very typical of the Japanese.


What qualities do you value in women?

The same as in men. There is no difference for me.


The main drawback…

Sometimes I am lazy. Tuned in solely for joy and pleasure. Although now this feature is rather my plus.


The concept of happiness…

Spend time with friends and family on a regular basis and indulge in delicious food.


The greatest misfortune…

The fact that I only play the violin and do not play other instruments. Only a little play the piano — not enough talent.


If you go back in time, what would you change?

I would practice the game even more and not waste time. And I would also broaden my horizons by studying deeper the symphonic and operatic repertoire.


A vivid memory from childhood…

I’m 6. I ride a bike in our town 40 minutes from New York.


A life-changing event…

The day I moved from New York to Berlin. I was 11.


The city of freedom and happiness…

Berlin is my home. My friends are in New York and Tokyo, and here I feel as free as possible.


Favorite writer and book…

Russian literature: Dostoevsky’s The Brothers Karamazov and The Gambler, Leo Tolstoy’s War and Peace. These authors opened my thinking. When I read Dostoevsky, I listened to Beethoven. Now these two geniuses are inextricably linked for me.


Your favorite flowers…

My wife and my children: daughter Mila and son Leo.


What do you hate?

Waste your time. Looking out the window, you can feel inspiration, but business meetings are not always important — sometimes they take up time.


What ability would you most like to have?

Know more languages. I speak English, German and Japanese, but I would like to add French and Italian. Culture is comprehended through language.


How would you like to die?

Die happy surrounded by loved ones.


Who would you like to be if not yourself?

The pilot. You can see different landscapes in different parts of the world. Nature on earth is amazing!


Your dream…

My dream is a world with different cultures, but without borders. A world where people with an open mind live who share common human values.


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