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The Japanese pianist, drummer, songwriter, producer and rock star – he co-founded the iconic metal band X Japan – Yoshiki Hayashi gave one of the most talked about performances of this year’s SXSW. To a heavenly chorus and enthusiastic audience applause, an ethereal looking Yoshiki appeared on a SXSW stage containing two pianos. Taking a seat at the closest, he had just begun to play “Art of Life” when another, more solid and life-like Yoshiki walked out on stage and proceeded to engage in an aggressive piano battle — with his holographic self. Yoshiki spent weeks rehearsing in order to perfect his ability to play in sync with the holographic image and recording. The resulting piano duet was amazing and provided the perfect showcase for Yoshiki’s impressive talent, as well as his ability to deliver a dramatic performance.
Yoshiki is no stranger to the dramatic. As co-founder of the iconic metal band X Japan, he is known for performing in flamboyant outfits and heavy make-up while furiously pounding the drums amid the band’s swirling light displays. But in addition to his significant rock pedigree — X Japan has sold a combined 30 million singles and albums and filled the Tokyo Dome a record 18 times — Yoshiki is a classically trained pianist whose solo career has also brought him international fame. His critically acclaimed classical album, Yoshiki Classical, debuted at #1 on the iTunes Classical Music chart in ten countries and in the top 10 in four more. Highlights on the album include “Anniversary,” composed by Yoshiki for the tenth anniversary of Emperor Akihito’s enthronement; “I’ll Be Your Love,” the theme of the World Expo Japan composed in 2005; and the Golden Globe Theme, composed by Yoshiki in 2012.
Yoshiki kicks off his highly anticipated world tour in support of this album on April 25 in Costa Mesa. “The Yoshiki Classical Tour” is a rare opportunity for both rock and classical music fans to see Yoshiki play a solo classical concert with his signature rock-star flair. Check out the social media links below to find a show near you.[hr color=”light-grey” width=”100″ border_width=”50″ ]