Nonsemble ~ Go Seigen vs. Fujisawa Kuranosuke

a closer listen

Nonsemble_Go_Seigen_vs._Fujisawa_KuranosukeOminous piano chords resound; a violin is strummed with growing anxiety; shuffling percussion imbues a sense of agitation. Just over a minute in, drums enter and the clouds break, the piano briefly bestowing calm before whisking us somewhere else. What relentless drama is unfurling before us?

Fans of traditional strategy games will likely be surprised that the drama – the inspiration for and the name behind Go Seigen vs. Fujisawa Kuranosuke – is in fact a Championship game of Go played in 1953. It’s a delightfully novel idea, but does raise the question (especially having watched videos such as this on YouTube) of exactly how composer and guitarist Chris Perren drew stimulus from such superficially dry source material. The answer involves broadening one’s understanding of “inspiration” and appreciating that, while a significant match, this Go championship game played over 60 years ago holds no unique, ineffable power – as Perren explains:


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