Waiting for her turn during a May concert to help support areas affected by the Great East Japan Earthquake, opera singer Maki Mori was circumspect.
"It isn't always positive living in this world. But I feel very strongly [about] and cherish music's role in reaching out to people during difficult times," she said.
Mori experienced the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks on United States soil firsthand while she was rehearsing for an opera scheduled to be performed in Washington.
Immediately after the catastrophe, Mori was evacuated to a suburban area of the capital. Ultimately she had to perform in the opera three days later without proper rehearsals.
"I was worried whether it would really be okay to perform under such circumstances," she recalled.
Despite her concern, Mori's performance at the well-attended concert received rapturous applause.
Mori said this experience helped her realize music can help people to recover from distress.
The singer, 41, believes even when faced with a serious disaster, musicians will never be powerless. "Because we can pray for victims and convey the greatness of being alive through our music," she explained.
Mori will sing Mozart's Requiem and other works at her recital to be held at the Tokyo Opera City in Shinjuku, Tokyo, on Sunday.
Sept. 11 will also mark the six-month anniversary of the March 11 earthquake and tsunami. Mori says she will put her soul into the pieces she will sing at the concert.
"I'll be happy if I'm able to convey my thoughts [about the disaster] to the audience, and hope the performance transcends being enjoyable and beautiful," she said.
(Sep. 6, 2011)