I had a lovely surprise recently, and have been waiting for an opportunity to mention it. The distinguished Japanese pianist Noriko Ogawa read my book ‘Out of Silence’ recently, and told me that she would like to translate it into Japanese. She has now been commissioned to do so for the Tokyo publishing house of Shunju-sha, who specialise in books on arts subjects, memoirs and philosophy.
This feels like a very special development, partly because in the world of pianists, it might be fair to say that there’s often more spirit of competition than of collaboration. Therefore it’s amazing – and heartwarming – to hear that another pianist likes my book so much that she’s prepared to spend a considerable portion of next year translating it, despite her own busy concert schedule. It’s also very pleasing that this initiative should come from Japan, a country whose art I have admired for so long. Altogether, Noriko’s project is one of the nicest things that has happened to me this year.
Noriko Ogawa is best known in this country as a performer, of course, but she is also well known in Japan for her articles about music and musicians, and she writes a regular column in one of Japan’s most widely-read piano magazines.