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December 10, 2023
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Exits and Entrances
Produced by: Roger Fenby
The Japanese composer Toru Takemitsu has taken poetry and folk songs and arranged them for choir and orchestra. In themselves they chart a journey from birth to death. They are interwoven with recordings from Tokyo maternity wards and in funeral parlours: a moving exposition of the ways that the Japanese make their exits and entrances. This program was produced by Roger Fenby for the BBC World Service, and airs as part of the international documentary exchange series Crossing Boundaries.

Program Credits

Exits and Entrances was produced by Roger Fenby for the BBC World Service. The song cycle Songs of the Earth was compiled by Charlotte Morita, and featured the choral music of Toru Takemitsu. This program aired as part of the international documentary exchange series, Crossing Boundaries.


Who was Toru Takemitsu?
A tiny, delicate man, standing just over 5ft high, Takemitsu was a giant in Japanese cultural life and in international contemporary music...

Japanese Funerals
Most Japanese funeral services are held in a Buddhist style. The following is a description of a Japanese funeral. Of course, there exist many variations.

The Encyclopedia of Japanese Pop Culture
by: Mark Schilling 1997
For the outsider, The Encyclopedia of Japanese Pop Culture is an insider's guide to post-war Japan, an encyclopedic compendium of books,movies,music,comedians,and cultural scandals that have had the greatest impact in Japan.

An Introduction to Japanese Society (Contemporary Japanese Society)
by: Yoshio Sugimoto 1997
A provocative, insightful and highly accessible book offers a comprehensive examination of contemporary Japanese society.

The Music of Toru Takemitsu (Music in the Twentieth Century,14)
by: Peter Burt 2001
This book is the first complete study in English of the work of the best-known Japanese composer of the twentieth century.

Ghosts and the Japanese:Culture Experience in Japanese Death Legends
by: Michiko Iwasaka 1994
This book illustrates the ongoing traditions and customs surrounding the Japanese attitudes toward life and death by examining Japanese ghost legends and artwork portraying ghosts.

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Programs by Roger Fenby

Radio for between the ears
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