Musical Event


Artificial and Natural Music from Japan


18:30 – 18:35 Welcome and short introduction

Stefania Bandini

University of Milano-Bicocca & Research Center for Advanced Science and Technology – The University of Tokyo

18:35 – 18:00 Human-robot emotional interaction through music
Sarah Cosentino and WAS-2 (WAseda Saxophonist Robot No. 2)

Global Center for Science and Engineering – Waseda University, Tokyo (JAPAN)

18:50 – 19:30 Nostalgic Music: Japanese and Italian musical selection
Yuri Shingu (Mezzo Soprano), Katsuhiro Nishinari (Tenor)
Research Center for Advanced Science and Technology – The University of Tokyo
Rena Igarashi (Soprano), Hisako Sugiyama (Alto) from Tokyo, and Sugiko Chinen (at piano) from Milano


Autumn medley

1. Just a little autumn: Singing insects- Home autumn– Dragonflies- Autumn in the village

Nostalgic Showa song

2. Suzhou serenade
3. Tokyo Kid
4. Hiyori-Geta

Nostalgic Italian song

5. Io che non vivo senza te

Nostalgic Showa song

6. Festival Mambo
7. Summer memories
8. Look up at the stars in the dark night sky
9. A rikisha driver


Sugiko Chinen graduated from the “Accademia Musicae Musashino” University of Tokyo. He attended the master classes of the Roman Romanini Academy of Brescia, the Philharmonic Academy of Bologna and those held by Maestro Aldo Ciccolini. She has been awarded in several international piano duo competitions. He has held numerous concerts both in Europe and in Japan, collaborating with various chamber ensembles and singers. Since 2001 she is a founding member and resident artist of “Notturno – Associazione Culturale Musicale di Milano”.

Sarah Cosentino is a hands-on engineer and academic researcher. She started working as a freelance collaborator in an Electronics company during high-school, until earning her M.Sc. in Electronic engineering at Politecnico di Milano. Straight after her graduation she moved to Japan, to work as a Robotics Engineer. She earned her Ph.D. in Robotics at Waseda University, where she currently holds a position as Associate Professor. During her career she collaborated with several other researchers across the globe, spending months in leading universities in U.S. and Europe. Her main interests are human physiology, human sensing, human communication, affective computing and human-machine interaction.

Rena Igarashi (Soprano) was born in Nagano, Japan. She studied anthropology at the Chuo University in Tokyo with one-year field research at the University of Philippines Diliman. She started singing in a chorus club at the University, then she went on studying singing under Yuri Shingu. In 2015, Rena performed as one of the crowds in Carmen with Yuri Shingu as a title role. Currently, she is based in Geneva, Switzerland, working for an international humanitarian organization. She is a member of the Geneva Outa-no-kai (Japanese Chorus Group).

Katsuhiro Nishinari (Tenor) is Professor at the Research Center of Advanced Science and Technology (RCAST), The University of Tokyo. The interest of his research is the emergent behavior of complex systems in terms of mathematical physics, considering real applications. He is especially active in the interdisciplinary study of collective dynamics of self-driven particles and its jamming phenomena, including vehicles, pedestrians, ants, packets in logistics and Internet, proteins in organisms. His research is based on Cellular Automata and mathematical and physical analysis, followed by computer simulations and experiments in order to create better models that show emergent properties.

WAS-2 – Waseda Saxophonist Robot No. 2 was born in 2009 at the Humanoid Robotics Institute (HRI), Waseda University, Tokyo and is an anthropomorfic robot designed to increase the range of sound by improving the design of the artificial lips and increase the range of fingering by designing a human-like hand. WAS-2 is composed by 22-DOFs reproducing the physiology and anatomy of the organs involved during the saxophone playing: 3-DOFs to control the shape of the artificial lips, 16-DOFs for the human-like hand, 1-DOF for the tonguing mechanism and 2-DOFs for the lung system (1-DOF for the air pump and for the valve mechanism).

Yuri Shingu (Mezzo Soprano) was born in Kumamoto, Japan. Graduated from High School of Koriyama Women’s College (piano) and Kunitachi College of Music (vocal music) made her operatic stage debut at NIKIKAI in “Le nozze di Figaro”. She went on to sing many prominent roles in her 20 years of career as a Mezzo Soprano singer, including title roles in Carmen, Suzuki (Madame Butterfly), Princess de Bouillon (Adrianna Lecouvreur), Emilia (Otello), Dorabella (Cosi fan tutte), Maddalena (Rigoletto), and to sing as a soloist in Handel’s Messiah, Beethoven’s Symphony No.9 and Missa Solemnis. Yuri sang in The Sleeping Beauty organized by the Italian Government at the 2005 World Exposition (Japan). In 2010 she sang at Teatro Ventidio Basso (Ascoli Piceno). She is also a researcher in the field of music therapy for neurological disorders, investigating human-voice and synthetic music.

Hisako Sugiyama (Alto), Tokyo, is a certified tour guide in Japan and have taken more than 1000 tourists every year from all over the world to many great scenic tourism places all over Japan. Her musical player history had started since she was 8, when she joined the children choir at her hometown Tochigi, Japan. Since then, singing has been her another “lifetime work”. She have also enjoyed learning to sing many beautiful songs from Ms. Yuri Shingu, who’s Today’s main performer, for more than 10 years, and very looked forward to singing at the front of all of you today.

All our gratitude to the Yact Club of Como for the kind hospitality and the support for the organization of this musical event.