Aurora Neva from Tampere, Finland visited a lesson of the Sapporo Kantele Club taught by Hiroko Ara on March 3rd, 2018. Aurora was vacationing in Japan with her family and getting acquainted with Japanese culture as well as kanteleplayers from Sapporo. Aurora studies kantele at the Tampere Conservatory under the direction of Eva Alkula. The evening flew by playing kantele together! First everyone improvised on 5-string kanteles, after which the Sapporo group performed several Finnish and Japanese pieces. Aurora performed the Japanese folk tune Shabondama – Soap Bubbles, the theme from the movie My Neighbor Totoro  as well as the English folk tune Greensleeves.

Aurora was most impressed with the friendliness of the Japanese people, as well as Tokio Disney Sea, of course! She told of her visit to a sushi course and tea ceremony as well as learning Japanese customs and even a little Japanese. Eating with chopsticks is easy after her visit and now sukiyaki and sushi are among her favorite dishes. “Kanteleplayers in Sapporo were really pleasant people and it was really fun – I wouldn’t have missed it for the world! Thanks to all of them for the pleasant evening!”


Text: Eva Alkula

Photo: Aurora Neva, her family and Sapporo Kantele Club with the teacher Hiroko Ara.

Translation: Jane Ilmola