Welcome to Hyperion Records, an independent British classical label devoted to presenting high-quality recordings of music of all styles and from all periods from the twelfth century to the twenty-first.
Hyperion offers both CDs, and downloads in a number of formats. The site is also available in several languages.
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Masao Araya (1914-1996) served as the orchestra’s first Principal Conductor from 1961 to 1968, during which time he laid the foundation of the orchestra’s success. The orchestra made its debut at the first Subscription Concert held under Araya’s conductorship on September 6, 1961. To honour Araya for his outstanding contribution, Sakkyo conferred the title of 'Honorary Founding Conductor' on him in 1997. Serving as the second Principal Conductor between 1969 and 1975 and polishing Sakkyo’s performances was the Austrian conductor Peter Schwarz (1925-1998). Schwarz made the orchestra’s first recording of Beethoven’s Symphony No. 3 (Eroica) among other works, and the first overseas concerts in the U.S. and Germany that he led during his tenure were also highly commended. Hiroyuki Iwaki (1932- 2006) served as Permanent Conductor from 1975, Music Director and Permanent Conductor from 1978 and Conductor Laureate from 1988 until he passed away in 2006. During his tenure, Iwaki dedicated himself to popularizing the works of Toru Takemitsu and other Japanese composers. With Iwaki, the orchestra created a sensation with its recording of Toru Takemitsu’s soundtrack for Akira Kurosawa’s film 'Ran', which established Sakkyo as one of Japan’s leading orchestras. Kazuyoshi Akiyama assumed the post of Music Advisor/Principal Conductor from 1988 to 1998 and built an impressively extensive repertoire. Starting in 1989, he inaugurated the regular concert 'Hokuren Classic Special' in Tokyo, which has been highly acclaimed every year since. The concert 'Toyota Classics', held in six Southeast Asian cities under the conductorship of Shunsaku Tsutsumi in 1992 and Kazuyoshi Akiyama in 1994, also gained great popularity.
The current Music Director, Tadaaki Otaka, served as Permanent Conductor from 1981 to 1986 and was appointed Music Advisor/Principal Conductor in 1998. He has been in the position of the second Music Director since 2004. Permanent Conductor Ken Takaseki was designated Associate Conductor from 1988 to 1992 and was inaugurated as Permanent Conductor in 2003. Based in the Sapporo Concert Hall 'Kitara', which boasts some of the best acoustics in the world, the orchestra, distinguished by its clear sound and dynamic powers of expression, has been increasingly praised as it engenders a charm that befits the vast land of Hokkaido. The concerts in the U.K in 2001 and South Korea in 2005 under Otaka’s conductorship were showered with glowing accolades. The orchestra began performing two subscription concerts for each program in 2005 and has since increased the audience numbers by over 10,000 people, resulting in a succession of sold-out concerts. With Otaka at the helm, the orchestra recorded Dvorák’s Symphony No 8 and No 9 (From the New World) and Elgar’s Symphony No 3 and March No 6 (Pomp and Circumstance) for release on album in November 2007. Aspiring to become an orchestra loved by an increasing number of Hokkaido residents, including those in Sapporo, Sakkyo, the Hokkaido-based professional orchestra, has been engaged in ever-active performance with its sights set on listeners across the world.