Messages from Our Leaders

Tomoko Torii President & Executive Director

 

 

 

 

Dear Friends of Harmony For Peace,

The spring has finaly come with summer like weather and many blooms are seen everywhere.  At the same time, 2016 has completed the first quarter and now gone into the second quarter.  How fast time goes!

At Harmony For Peace, we have just opened our second Peace Art Exhibition at the Pennsylvania Capitol Building in Harrisburg.  This exhibition has assembled a small collection bringing a variety of mediums and generation of artists creating a very interesting exhibit of superb works.  Visitors to the Capitol Building can see the exhibit at the East Wing Rotunda. There are a few works by the students of a Philadelphia middle school, artists from different countries such as the Philippines, Brunei, Nigeria, Japan and Cuba.   A wide range of generations have come together around the themes of peace, love, harmony, understanding and liberty.  The images selected using these themes seem to have a broader significance yet they are more profound and thought provoking. We believe, the significance of these themes can be interpreted as respect, forgiving, tolerance, acceptance and more. It is for the viewer to feel what the art image expresses to them. There will be a reception and music program on April 13th.  You can find more information about the event here

In addition, calls for our Jr. Peace and Music Ambassador Competition will be opened on Monday, April 11.  All young musicians are welcome to enter.  Music teachers, coaches, instructors, parents of young musicians, please let young musicians around you know of this program.  The entry instructions can be found from here.

We look forward to seeing many people at the art exhibit in Harrisburg as well as receiving many applications for our Jr. Peace & Music Ambassador competition.

Finally, please note that our office phone number has changed to +1.484.200.7400.

Warm Wishes,

Tomoko Torii

President & Executive Director (Co-Founder)
Harmony For Peace Foundation

 

Tomoko Torii Executive Director

 

 

 

Dear Friends of Harmony For Peace,

In this part of Northeast US, we thought this winter is warmer than usual and snow would be a rarity. Well, it did arrive and hit hard. Yet, it seems it is short lived and soon to be over.  We hope you are all safe and well, with warm spring weather to be here soon.

At Harmony For Peace, we have our first peace event of the year coming very soon. On February 21st, we will hold our “Friendship Concert & Dinner” event at the Rotwitt Theatre at Rosemont College just outside Philadelphia.  We hope people in the nearby region and the neighboring communities will come and join us to enjoy the beautiful program of piano solo by Gohei Nishikawa, opera aria by Sungji Kim and violin solo by Daniel Kim.  In addition, we also have a presentation of giant origami by Taro Yaguchi with music together with additional programs by the International Opera Theatre, our special guest speaker and more.

Dinner will be a wonderful occasion to mingle with many community’s leaders and also to meet the artists, enjoy conversation with friends and supporters of Harmony For Peace.

More details can be found on the event page.

We look forward to meeting you and your guests.  In addition, we will be announcing our 2016 program over our webpages very soon.

Please stay safe and warm in these remaining days of severe January winter.

Warm Wishes,

 Tomoko Torii

President & Executive Director (Founding Partner)
Harmony For Peace Foundation

 

Tomoko Torii, Executive Director

 

 

Dear Friends of Harmony For Peace,

During this time of the Holidays,  we have much to thankful for.  I would like to express our deep gratitude to, first and foremost,  all young musicians who performed for us at our Peace Concerts here in the US and abroad, and to our special guests artists who despite their busy schedule traveled many miles to join our young artists in very meaningful performances.   We say our thanks to those who continued to work so hard to give what young performers are looking for, not only the skills but wisdom and experiences.  We are thankful to those parents who understand the needs and earnest feelings of young people to join their follow musicians and to practice and to play, to excel in their performance and their needs to be in many places for many hours of lessons. 

Our peace initiatives will not be carried out without our wonderful hardworking interns and volunteers.  This year, we have close to hundred volunteers in and out of the US who helped us and to them, we thank you.  Our gratitude also goes to all the people made our events successful backstage, in the news, on air and through many other channels.

Our advisors, supporters and participants are very much the integral part of all we do. To all of you, we say our warm thank you.

The year has again seen many impacts domestic and abroad, some joyous but some full of sorrow.  Here in Philadelphia, we have a few to be proud of and thankful for.  We celebrated Pope Francis’s visit; our city was named as World Heritage City; and our own Celebration of UN70 in October.  This event not only commemorated 70 years of the United Nations work to support world issues but signified the 70 years ending of world conflicts and 70 years since Hiroshima and Nagasaki tragic nuclear catastrophes.  Globally, we had our Peace Concert in Tokyo on April 10 and Peace Concert in Hiroshima on July 3 this year.

It has indeed been a very busy and memorable year for us.

  • Our Peace Concert Series has now grown to be an annual event in major cities.   This year over 3500 guests attended including 600 artists performed, 300 “Gift of Music” invited young guests.
  • Our World Tour of “Peace Art Journey Exhibit” was launched in Harrisburg, PA, September 2014.  The art collection of 12 original works by 12 artists aged 5 to 17 from 12 different countries has now been shown for 180 days in six major cities and has been viewed by over 15,000 people. 
  • Please visit some of the video clips and photo galleries linked here and via our website.

For 2016, we are continuing these programs with some new to reach out around the world.

We cannot do these regular and special programs without your help. Your contribution will help us continue all initiatives established and add more to provide an opportunities to “Play and Pray for Peace together.”  The year end donation online site is linked here. 

Please plan to bring your children, grandchildren, nieces and nephews and their families and friends to get involved and to attend.

We deeply appreciate your thoughtfulness and hope for your continued interest in our mission, programs and to have your continued support new and throughout 2016.

Warm Wishes for the Holiday Season to you and your family.

 Tomoko Torii

President & Executive Director (Founding Partner)
Harmony For Peace Foundation
Tomoko Torii Executive Director

 
 Dear Friends of Harmony For Peace,
 
I hope you all had a restful and memorable summer, and with the beginning of the autumn at hand, you are refreshed and ready to embark on the remaining months of this year. Now it is time for us to announce our annual event in Philadelphia!
 
We will be presenting the “Celebrate Peace for UN70” Concert and Events on October 24, 2015 at the Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts in Philadelphia. As we work closely with the United Nations, we will celebrate its 70th anniversary with this special event, honoring its longstanding global efforts, as well as our own continuous theme of “Peace through Music.”
 
We have a full day of events planned, starting with the Peace Forum “Living Together; The Art of Co-Existence,” led by the United Nations Association of Greater Philadelphia, our Project Partner, at 1 p.m. in a meeting room at the Kimmel Center. The feature event, our very special concert, will follow at 3 p.m., and finally, we will hold a Celebration Dinner and Meet the Artist Reception as a thank you to our donors, supporters and partners. 
 
It is our pleasure to announce that the world renowned composer of “The Lord of the Rings” Symphony, Johan de Meij, will act as our conductor. He will be joined by the Peabody Youth Orchestra of Baltimore (Music Director: Harlan D. Parker),  and will present “Gandalf” (Movement I from Symphony No.1 The Lord of the Rings), “Jupiter” (Gustav Holst, from the Planets) and “Mother Earth” (Movement III from Symphony No. 3 Planet Earth”).
 
We newly welcome violinist and violist Dr. Yeou-Cheng Ma to our line up. Dr. Ma is a both a soloist and chamber musician, and is the Executive Director of Children's Orchestra Society in New York. She is also a Developmental Peditrician and specializes in music and health for children.
 
We will also feature pianist Gohei Nishikawa, who after overcoming a battle with a muscle movement disorder in his fingers and hands, has gone on to enjoy successful career these past years. His story is an inspiration to us all.
 
This is also the second year for ourJunior Peace and Music Ambassador Competition, calling on youth musicians to audition to become our cross-cultural representative. Through their music, the winner will represent us to  work to share the meaning of “Play for Peace for better world” spreading the power of music to share with others, leading to mutual understanding. The 2015 winner is Ms. Sein An and she will perform solo at our upcoming concert and a title hand-off by our 2014 Jr. Ambassador Brenden Zak. The two performers will then join Mr. Nishikawa for an ensemble of his own arrangement.
 
We have invited ChildrenSong of New Jersey and Chester County Youth Choir and Chorale, two musical groups from the surrounding area, to once again take the stage.
 
Through our donor-funded Gift of Music program, we will also host young people from organizations and schools in the tri-state area to participate in a peace and music workshop, as well as enjoy the concert. We ask that you consider donating a concert seat to a child in our area, and donor support and options can be found here.
 
We greatly encourage all our friends and supporters to come out for this special show, not only for the riveting performances lined up, but for the reasoning behind the concert and this day of events.
 
Our concert is a platform for artists of many backgrounds to work together to promote friendship and peace beyond borders. With this in mind, we celebrate the United Nations longstanding efforts for global peace and universal rights. Using music as our vehicle of communication, we work to share our message of understanding and friendship regardless of culture, background and beliefs.
 
We ask for your continued support, your help spreading the word of this special day, and of course, we hope to see you at the concert on October 24.
 
With Peace & Harmony,
 
Tomoko Torii
Executive Director

 

 
 
Tomoko Torii Executive Director

 

 

 

Dear Friends of the Foundation,

We just wrapped up our Peace Concert IN HIROSHIMA at the JMS Aster Plaza on July 3, 2015, and what a beautiful evening it was. There is something magical, definitely heartwarming, in watching artists of all ages and musicality join together to share in our message for peace worldwide. As their sounds harmonized and resonated through the hall, I believe that hope for a better tomorrow was restored in us all. Something so beautiful could only mean possibility, and that will keep Harmony For Peace Foundation striving for better understanding and friendship between cultures and nations.
 
Our special guests included South Korean Conductor Yoonhak Baek; Japanese duo Alchemist, known for their popular commercial hit for Sekisui House; and South Korean Baritone Daniel Oh. Violinist Honoka Kikukaw, our Junior Peace and Music Ambassador Japan, once again made us proud.
 
The participating local school choirs, that gave splendid performances, were the Hiroshima Noboricho Elementary School, the school of Sadako Sasaki and Hiroshima Motomachi High School, known for their high achievements in fine arts. The concert could not be complete without the beautiful harmony of the prestigious Hiroshima University Orchestra.
 
I must thank all our talented performers, directors, parents and special guests for their dedication and hard work. It is always a pleasure to work with passionate and like-minded people.
 
Prior to the concert, we opened our “Peace Art Journey” Exhibit from June 18-28. It was a success, sharing the message for “a world free of nuclear weapons” from talented youth artists around the world with the people of Hiroshima. The exhibit was hosted at the Former Bank of Japan in Hiroshima, and this historic building withstood the 1945 bombings, although just a mere 380 meters from the hypocenter.  
 
As our Peace Project Japan 2015 finishes up with an art exhibit in Nagasaki, we are so pleased by the kind support and positive response our projects and events received while in Japan. It encourages us to continue on, spreading our message worldwide, using music and art as our medium.

I hope all our friends and supporters continue to join us in our efforts. As we have said before, spreading the message of peace does not fall to one person, but rather to a global family, working together to promote international and multicultural friendship and understanding.

 
With Harmony and Peace,
Tomoko Torii
Executive Director
 
Tomoko Torii Executive Director

  

Dear Friends of Harmony For Peace
 
Our project in Hiroshima is fast approaching as we continue our Peace Project Japan 2015. We travel to Hiroshima now, in line with the city’s 70 years long and ongoing efforts for peace in the world. We join these efforts, promoting global peace, friendship and above all, a world without nuclear weapons. 
 
Beginning June 18, Harmony For Peace Foundation will showcase its “Peace Art Journey” Exhibit at the Former Bank of Japan in Hiroshima. This exhibit, open to the public, is an international collection of 12 artworks by peace-minded children around the world, supported by the United Nations Office of Disarmament Affairs in New York. Illustrating a universal desire for peace, the exhibit has been traveling globally to spread its message, including global stops in Vienna, Austria and Tokyo, Japan. This summer, the exhibit will continue on to Nagasaki.
For our feature event – an international call for peace through music - we will present Part II of our International Peace Concert Series; Peace Concert IN HIROSHIMA. On Friday, July 3, 2015, at the JMS Aster Plaza Main Concert Hall, we will be presenting this multicultural concert and inviting performers from the city and beyond, also honoring the friendship between its sister city Daegu, Korea.
Our special guests include Conductor Yoonhak Baek, professor at Yeungnam University and Music Director for ConcertOPERA in Philadelphia; Japanese Piano and Vocal, Alchemist, known for their popular commercial hit for Sekisui House; and South Korean Baritone Daniel Oh. The foundation’s Junior Peace and Music Ambassador Japan, violinist Honoka Kikukawa, will also take the stage with a feature performance.
 
Local schools will also be participating, including Hiroshima Noboricho Elementary School, the school of Sadako Sasaki; Hiroshima Motomachi High School, known for their high achievements in fine arts and the prestigious Hiroshima University Symphony Orchestra.
 
During this special time we ask for your support. Be it your presence at our concert or art exhibit, your generous donations or your dedicated time to volunteer, we graciously rely on the help of our friends. It is the work of a global family that makes our mission for international and multicultural peace and understanding possible.
Join us as a united voice for a more peaceful tomorrow. Please spread the word of our upcoming events, and we hope to see you there as well!
 
With Peace and Harmony,
 
Tomoko Torii
Executive Director
 
Tomoko Torii President & Executive Director

 

 

 

 Dear Friends of Harmony For Peace,

It is such a relief that Spring is just around the corner. In fact, the changing season inspires us to continue on with our newest initiatives and projects.

 

This April, our organization travels to Tokyo, Japan to present our Peace Project JAPAN, five separate initiatives all with the same ideals – promoting peace, friendship and understanding among cultures, nations and generations.

 

Our International Peace Concert Tokyo is our feature initiative - a festival of multicultural artists and school performers joining together for a message of peace worldwide. It will take place on April 10, 2015 at 7 p.m. at the Tokyo Metropolitan Theatre. It is our hope to see all our friends and supporters in Tokyo enjoying this beautiful event, for there is nothing that gives us more pleasure than to see our message reverberate through a packed concert hall. We would also like to welcome our special guests, a group of 60 Hibakusha invited through our cooperation with Mayors For Peace's 2020 Vision and other organizations. Also, 200 children who lost thier homes and families in the Tohoku Disaster - organized by Ashinaga and KiraKiraBoshi, will join us at the concert.

 Our new Junior Peace and Music Ambassador Japan, Ms. Honoka Kikukawa, will represent Harmony For Peace as a feature performer at the concert, as well as at events throughout the coming year.  We have also launched our Tokyo Art Competition, calling on young artists in Tokyo to submit art of all mediums, illustrating global friendship, free from conflict. The winning artworks will join our “Peace Art Journey” Exhibit, a 12 piece collection illustrating a universal desire for peace, first at the concert hall, and next on its global tour.

 Following the close of the concert, our visiting US musician, cellist Ohad Bar-David, will lead a cross-cultural forum and music presentation with high school students, teachers and instructors at the Symphony Space of Tokyo Metropolitan Theatre on April 11. Through musical and cross-cultural lessons, students will learn that music can bridge relations among cultures and countries, especially the US and Japan. We hope to see you there!

 

Worldwide peace and nonviolence, especially today, is a grand mission. Yet it is the small efforts and peace-minded initiatives that give hope to such a cause.  

Join us in our efforts for promoting peace, for the sake of the happiness, security and lives of all the peoples of the world, regardless of background, faith, culture or nationality.

One Voice ...One World.

Help music be the universal language to share this powerful message and mission.

With Harmony and Peace,

Tomoko Torii

 

Season's Greetings from Tomoko Torii, President & Executive Director

 

   

 

Dear Friends of Harmony For Peace,

Warm Wishes for a Happy and Healthy New Year.  May the new year bring us all more peaceful surroundings and greater love for all.

As we launch our new year, we ask you for your continued support in our mission and activities this year. 

Last year, we were able to have many exciting programs and events. In the spring, we celebrated our fifth anniversary as a foundation; our Second Annual International Peace Day Concert on September 21 reached over 1000 guests, 300 young and professional performers and 200 Gift of Music recipients; and finally, we launched our World Tour, “A Peace Art Journey” exhibit, showcasing first in Harrisburg, Philadelphia and New York City – and in December, at the Hofburg Palace and the United Nations Headquarters in Vienna, Austria, with more stops in Europe to follow.

It is a whirlwind of activities, planning and executing, however, it is without doubt that all gives us an utmost pleasure and joy.  And, you all are a great part of this peace building effort Harmony For Peace is fortunate to serve.  Our projects, concerts and initiatives are only made possible through the generous support of our friends. Each day we are encouraged by peace-minded people to move forward with our mission, promoting international and cross-cultural peace and understanding for a world free from violence and most of all nuclear weapons. It is a grand mission, but each day has the potential to make a difference.

We will continue working towards our goal, and therefore, we ask that you continue to join us in our efforts. Your generosity will keep our projects and initiatives strong and ongoing.                                                                                                                  

Thank you for your belief in Harmony For Peace Foundation, and may we wish you greater prosperity and joy in 2015.

With peace and harmony,

Tomoko Torii


from Our President & Executive Director, Tomoko Torii

 

 

Dear Friends,

After months of planning and preparation, our hard work finally amounted to a beautiful and successful Second Annual International Peace Day Concert. Not only did we thrill the audience with splendid musical performances and talent, but we brought together many cultures and backgrounds to celebrate International Day of Peace.

We were able to merge many of our initiatives into one spectacular night, with our core mission of "peace one day" shining through. This year’s concert hosted over two hundred Gift of Music recipients, featured Harmony For Peace’s first Junior Peace and Music Ambassador and showcased our “Art For Peace” winner exhibit. All of these initiatives will continue, made stronger with their presentation at this concert.

We sincerely thank all the young performers, directors and parents, special guests for their dedication and hard work. We hosted a truly spectacular group of artists.

Yet it was only with the help of our supporters and friends that this concert was made possible. Spreading the message of peace does not fall to one person, but rather to a global family, working together to promote international and multicultural friendship and understanding.

Although this concert has come and gone, Harmony For Peace’s mission remains, steadfastly goes on. We will continue to spread a message of peace and nonviolence through music and the arts, and we ask that you continue to join us in these efforts. In today’s world, with threats of war and conflict present each day, our work is needed now more than ever.

With peace and harmony,

Tomoko Torii

President & Executive Director (Founding Partner)
Harmony For Peace Foundation
 
from Our President & Executive Director Tomoko Torii

 

 

 

Dear Friends,

Summer Greetings! I am amazed at how the time is just flying by us. Our Second Annual International Peace Day Concert is just two months away!

This year our concert centers around the concept “Celebrate Peace, Embrace Diversity.”  Every concert, we invite musicians from around the world, each with their own musicality. We bring these performers together, not to merge their sounds, but rather embrace the many cultures and origins that influence their music. Yet their different sounds still harmonize beautifully together.  This year, we will feature an ensemble of international friends with an Eastern and Asian influence in classical rendition.

As the concert date approaches, there is still so much to do. We recently began an international music competition, inviting young musicians to audition to be our Junior Peace and Music Ambassador. The winner will both have a feature spot at our concert, as well as represent Harmony For Peace during the year with musical performances among communities. 

We also launched an online fundraiser to fund our Gift of Music program for this year’s concert. With the help of generous donations, children of the Philadelphia and surrounding areas will be able to experience a night of moving and multicultural music. Perhaps this night could have a lasting impression on our young guests, inspiring them to take up an instrument and to play for peace. 

To make this all possible, we need your support and generosity. No matter where you are, you can join in the effort to not only conceive a superlative musical concert, but spread the message of peace and nonviolence through music.

With peace and harmony

Tomoko Torii

President & Executive Director (Founding Partner)
Harmony For Peace Foundation