On December 14, Dr. Katsura KOISHI (Assistant Professor; Institute for Research in Humanities and Hakubi-Center, Kyoto University) gave an open lecture titled, “Why Wagner? Introduction to the society of intellectuals through Wagner music” at Music Science Lecture Hall, Heidelberg University. Dr. Koishi’s main research field is Mendelssohn and Leipzig music in the 18-9century however, this time, she focused on the peculiar phenomena at Japan’s established universities, that play Prelude from “Nürnberger’s Meistersinger” at entrance ceremonies.
We are pleased to have audience not only from Heidelberg University but ordinary people filling the venue. Many of them seemed to have seen the huge entrance ceremony in Japan for their first time. It has stirred up the curiosity of the audience and led to a live and active discussion time, following the lecture itself. Some participants have revealed their own explanation, “Wagner music may be used as a reward to enter the elite university” or “I was being told when young, that I will understand Wagner once I am successful in life.” Or the discussion went on to music education in Japan as Dr. Koishi mentioned in her comment that many/most of the students and staff who take part in the ceremony does not know that the music is composed by Wagner.
We highly appreciate your passionate participation in this lecture and hope to continue with further topics in the future to come.