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Hikaru Suzuki's Hokusai Flute Sonata No.2 and Dance of the Starlings | Premieres

Premiere: Hokusai Flute Sonata No.2 for flute and piano (2022) and further flute pieces by Hikaru Suzuki at the Music Conservatory Zurich

Since 2018, the death of her beloved dog Banon has put a strong brake on her creative energy. She had almost stopped composing since then. In the meantime, she met the flutist Alexander Zimoglyadov and his accompanist Sandra Carina Meier. Through these two musicians she got a feeling that she would like to compose a piece for them. That is how this sonata came into being. This sonata is dedicated to Alexander and Sandra.

Last autumn, 7 concerts were performed in Switzerland with three different programmes featuring exclusively works by the Japanese composer Hikaru Suzuki, who lives in Switzerland. They were performed by ten outstanding musicians. One of the concert programmes, the one with the flute works, was performed by Alexander Zimoglyadov – flute and Sandra Carina Meier – piano, who live in Switzerland.The flute sonata no. 2 Hokusai and Dance of the Starlings were both world premieres, the Lake Constance Suite no. 2 was performed for the second time. Due to the excellent interpretations of the musicians, the audience was enthusiastic and deeply touched emotionally.

Katsushika Hokusai, Goten-yama hill, Shinagawa on the Tōkaidō, ca. 1832

Hikaru Suzuki was inspired by the paintings of Hokusai

Katsushika Hokusai (1760-1849) was a famous Japanese painter. His paintings are not only beautiful, there is also something eerie in them. You may feel it when you listen to this piece.

Live recording of Flute sonata no. 2 Hokusai:

Hikaru Suzuki: Flötensonate Nr. 2 Hokusai

Orchestration: for flute and piano

Duration: 20'

Composed in the winter of 2021/2022. Inspired by Hokusai's paintings, Hikaru Suzuki simultaneously imagined that the two befriended musicians Alexander Zimoglyadov and Sandra Carina Meier would play it. That is how this sonata was created. Hokusai's paintings are not only beautiful, they also have something eerie about them.

1st mov.: Allegro moderato

2nd mov.: Scherzando

3rd mov.: Tranquillo

4th mov.: Allegro

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Live recording of Dance of the Starlings:

Hikaru Suzuki: Tanz der Stare

Orchestration: for flute and piano

Duration: 4'

Composed in December 2010. Hikaru saw these starlings on the island of Rügen. This piece came from that memory.

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Live recording of Lake Constance Suite no. 2:

Hikaru Suzuki: Bodensee-Suite Nr. 2

Orchestration: for flute and piano

Duration: 14'

The town where I live is on Lake Constance (=Bodensee). I wanted to write a piece about this beautiful landscape, and this is the piece I wrote. I wrote another piece for cello and piano earlier about Lake Constance, and I was surprised that in both suites many pieces are about birds !

My home in Japan is also by the sea. I see my home through Lake Constance. In the Bodenseelied (1 and 7) you can feel it a bit from the way the melody is played.


1. Bodenseelied

2. Landschaft

3. Entenspaziergang

4. Wind

5. Vogelgezwitscher

6. Mond

7. Bodenseelied

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About the musicians

Weitere Werke für Flöte und Klavier von Hikaru Suzuki:

Hikaru Suzuki: Hishou

Orchestration: for flute and piano

Duration: 16'

"Hishou" are 11 little pieces about feelings of my childhood. It is a work for which I have very strong feelings.

I still remember the moment when I heard the melody of the first piece. This first song is about wanting to have a free heart. I was in the kitchen with my family. Then, all of a sudden, I heard this melody. I shouted, "I hear an amazing and wonderful melody!" My family still remembers it. And in no time I had finished eleven pieces. I had just started composing at that time, I had just finished the songs, and I had an opportunity to perform them to an audience. I remember how relieved I was when I heard from the audience that it touched their hearts. "Hishou" has been played the most so far. From the second piece onwards, I express in it my feelings as a child, which I was not allowed to show at home at that time. Once I wrote the German title of each song on a piece of paper and made a quiz out of it to see which song the listeners thought went with which title. It was a great opportunity for the children to listen carefully to the music and wonder how I express my feelings. I was happy to see that the children really listened seriously and enjoyed it.

For the last piece, I wanted to write a song about how I wish everyone would be happy one day. This melody came to me. It may not be classical, but if it touches people's hearts, I think it's fine.

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Hikaru Suzuki: 2 Stücke nach Bildern von Paul Klee

Orchestration: for flute and piano

Duration: 6'

These pieces were directly inspired by paintings she had seen in the original at the Zentrum Paul Klee in Bern. After two days, the pieces were already finished. The two piece titles are also the titles of the paintings.


1. forgetful angel 

2. bust of a child  

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Hikaru Suzuki: Flötensonate Nr. 1

Orchestration: for flute and piano

Duration: 17'

Composed in 2009. Hikaru was at the Klee Museum in Bern at that time. There she looked at so many of his paintings. His paintings influenced this sonata. For example, the sound and in the fast movement, sometimes a slow melody appears in between, which she had felt from the pictures.

1st mov.: Allegro moderato

2nd mov: Scherzo

3rd mov.: Andante

4th mov.: Finale

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