Tuesday, September 16, 2014   

'Japan's Beethoven' could hear: ghostwriter
(02-06 19:14)

The ghostwriter for the musician lauded as Japan's Beethoven said Thursday he became fed up and ended their 18-year collaboration last year and he questioned if Mamoru Samuragochi really could hear.
Samuragochi, 50, had previously claimed to be the sole author of his classical works and sound tracks for video games, such as Biohazard, despite having lost his hearing by age 35. His story resonated in Japan, where perseverance is greatly admired. But he admitted Wednesday that he did not write the powerful "Hiroshima Symphony'' and other works credited to him.
His ghost composer, Takashi Niigaki, said he provided music for Samuragochi for 18 years and questioned if he was hearing impaired.
"I saw no signs that he could not hear,'' Niigaki said as, seemingly flustered by the limelight, he struggled to answer a barrage of questions over how Samuragochi could have managed the deception for so long.
A written statement from Samuragochi's lawyers apologized for what he called a "betrayal'' of his fans and described Samuragochi as being in "too unstable an emotional state'' to appear in public.
On Thursday, lawyer Kazushi Orimoto told reporters that he did believe his client was hearing impaired. Samuragochi has a certificate for his disability and is classified as having severe hearing loss.
His official biography says Samuragochi was born in Hiroshima to survivors of the 1945 atomic bomb attack and began playing music and composing at an early age. The cause of his gradual hearing loss hasn't been explained.
Nippon Columbia Co. issued a statement expressing astonishment and outrage that Samuragochi had not composed his own music. The company stopped sales of his works, while major media outlets including national broadcaster NHK apologized for having run programs featuring Samuragochi as an accomplished composer.
Niigaki said he hopes to continue composing and performing despite the brouhaha over Samuragochi's admission of having faked authorship of many works, including an arrangement, "Sonatina for Violin,'' that figure skater Daisuke Takahashi plans to use for his short program at the Sochi Olympics.
It was his concern over Takahashi that led him to speak out, Niigaki said, as he feared that a disclosure of the truth later might be more awkward for him.
Asked how the two worked together, Niigaki said he would compose pieces and sometimes play them for Samuragochi, who would then choose which he liked.
"The music was born of my collaboration with him,'' Niigaki said. "I produced all the works to the best of my ability.'' --AP   
Other World breaking news:
Ukraine parliament ratifies landmark EU pact (51 mins ago)
Leaders pledge powers in final push before Scottish vote (1 hr 18 mins ago)
Economy at heart of confidence vote for French PM (2 hrs 42 mins ago)
Judge in Pistorius trial faces criticism (2 hrs 50 mins ago)
Australian sailors in court over rubber chicken sex assault (09-16 15:14)
Thai police hunt killers of two Britons found beaten to death (09-16 11:45)
Quake hits Tokyo (09-16 11:41)
US bombs IS near Baghdad for first time (09-16 10:51)
Malaysia to send rubber gloves to Ebola-stricken countries (09-15 19:17)
UK's Phones 4U collapses with 5,500 jobs at risk: company (09-15 18:46)

More breaking news >>

© 2014 The Standard, The Standard Newspapers Publishing Ltd.
Contact Us | About Us | Newsfeeds | Subscriptions | Print Ad. | Online Ad. | Street Pts

 


Home | Top News | Local | Business | China | ViewPoint | CityTalk | World | Sports | People | Central Station | Spree | Features

The Standard

Trademark and Copyright Notice: Copyright 2014, The Standard Newspaper Publishing Ltd., and its related entities. All rights reserved.  Use in whole or part of this site's content is prohibited.   Use of this Web site assumes acceptance of the
Terms of Use, Privacy Policy Statement and Copyright Policy.  Please also read our Ethics Statement.