Mitsune

Photo: Adam Sait
Photo: Adam Sait

Mitsune is an all-female shamisen trio based in Berlin, with members hailing from Japan, Australia and Germany. They specialise in Tsugaru Shamisen, a unique 3-stringed Japanese folk instrument, which was favoured by the blind monks of olden Japan. The women of Mitsune delight in turning tradition on its head, performing an exciting mix of Japanese folk songs, virtuosic modern repertoire, and original compositions & arrangements drawing from Middle Eastern, blues and world music influences. Their performances are joyous and engaging, the sounds of the shamisen spiced with vocals, violin, shinobue (bamboo flute) and percussion. 

The name Mitsune translates from Japanese as "a sweet sound", but is also a play on the word "mitsu", which indicates three of something - the three strings of a shamisen, three women, three cultures coming together in harmony.

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