The Orchestra Concert Program B Lottery Ticket Sales start tomorrow!

Tickets for the Orchestra Concert Program B conducted by a world-renowned Mo. John Williams will start lottery sales tomorrow.

Applications are accepted by online OMF Web ticket or postcard. The period for applications is from May 12 (Fri) to May 18 (Thur).

For details on how to apply, please check the Lottery Ticket Sales page here.

Results of lottery sales will be announced on May 31 (Wed).

We look forward to receiving your applications!

2023OMF Official Leaflet is out!

2023OMF Official Leaflet is out!

Along with the details of all programs, you can find the anticipated Saito Kinen Orchestra Members list, too. The printed version will be available for everyone at classical music concerts and concert halls.

For digital version, check the link below.

2023OMF Offical Leaflet

2023OMF Program Details Announced!

We are happy to annouce the details of 2023OMF Official Programs.

Along with highly anticipated Orchestra Concerts program, the program details of OMF Opera, Chamber Music Concerts, and Educational Programs, including the program details of free-entry Open Events has been announced. For each program, please check the Program List webpage.

2023OMF Program List

Tickets go on sale June 10 (Sat) 10:00 AM (JST) - Excluding tickets for the Orchestra Concert Program B.

Orchestra Concert Program B tickets will be sold in advance by lottery sale. The period for lottery applications is from May 12 (Fri) to May 18 (Thur).For details on the lottery applications, please check Tickets for Orchestra Concert Program B webpage.

2023OMF Tickets

We look forward to seeing you all in Matsumoto!

The Matsumoto festival marked its 30th anniversary in 2022 and we have launched preparations to begin a new chapter this year.

 John Williams, a good friend since my days in Boston, has agreed to come to the festival for Orchestra Concert Program B. It was my longtime wish to have him conduct SKO someday, and I have talked with him about SKO for years. John is a superb musician as both composer and conductor; I am beyond excited that he will conduct SKO and that we will reunite in Matsumoto.

 Stéphane Denève will conduct the Orchestra Concert Program A. I have been following Stéphaneʼs career as a conductor since engaging him as my assistant for Poulencʼs Dialogues des Carmélites at the Saito Kinen Festival Matsumoto in 1998. In 2013, he conducted SKO for the Ravel opera Lʼheure espagnole, so this will be his second appearance at the festival.

 Stéphane is greatly trusted by John Williams, and it wouldn’t be an exaggeration to say that his presence encouraged John’s decision to come to Japan. As a tribute to him, Stéphane's program will include John William’s Concerto for Tuba and Orchestra, which also builds a bridge to Program B. In the latter half of his program, he will present repertoire that is his speciality. Isabel Leonard will come to Japan to sing the solo part in Poulenc's Stabat Mater, and it feels like karma that she is the one who performed the leading role in L’heure espagnole. I also look forward to the participation of the local Matsumoto OMF Chorus and Tokyo Opera Singers.

 The Saito Kinen Orchestra members and I look forward to welcoming you again this summer in Matsumoto.

 Seiji Ozawa Matsumoto Festival Director


[Audition announcement] 2023 OMF Chamber Music Study Group -Liedduo-

リート勉強会写真1 リート勉強会写真2 リート勉強会写真3 リート勉強会写真4
©Michiharu Okubo / 2022 Seiji Ozawa Matsumoto Festival

Seiji Ozawa Matsumoto Festival has been putting its effort to educate young musicians and marking a great success.
We are happy to announce that the festival welcomes Prof. Mitsuko Shirai as a teacher again and has Liedduo Masterclass at Okushiga Kogen as OMF Chamber Music Study Group. We will have 2 concerts to show their growth.

Please see below for audition information.

Schedule Aug. 9, 2023 (Thu) – Aug. 20, 2023 (Sun)
Place Okushiga Kogen in Nagano prefecture: Okushiga Kogen Hotel The Music Hall
Matsumoto city in Nagano prefecture: The Harmony Hall
Contents 1) Liedduo (DeutschesLied) Lessons. The class will teach Japanese songs as well.
2) 2 concerts by master class course members (8/17 Okushiga Kogen, 8/19 Matsumoto city)
Teacher Mitsuko Shirai (Mezzo-soprano/Professor at Staatliche Hochschule für Musik Karlsruhe, Guest professor at Kunitachi College of Music)
Mitsuko Shirai
Expenses ・Accommodation fee and meal expenses regarding the classes are covered by the festival.
※In case you are joining the class from overseas, there will be a support from the festival. Please ask for details.
Number of candidates Liedduo 6 groups (in total 12 singers and pianists.)
Entry condition Under 35 as of April 1st, 2023. Studying at or graduated from music university, graduate school or academy. Or anyone who has a same quality.
Audition March 31, 2023
Venue Hakuju Hall
Repertoire 3 Free songs (DeutscheLieder). 10 min per duo.
Application Application form (Google Forms)
Application close March 20, 2023
For inquiry E-mail:

2023OMF Program Announcement! Maestro John Williams, special friend of Festival Director Seiji Ozawa, to conduct an orchestra concert!


We are pleased to announce the outline of the 2023 Seiji Ozawa Matsumoto Festival to be held for 19 days from Saturday, August 19 to Wednesday, September 6, 2023.

The 2023 OMF will showcase two orchestra concerts. For <Program A> scheduled for Friday, August 25 and Sunday, August 27, the spirited French maestro Stéphane Denève will conduct the Saito Kinen Orchestra. Having first appeared in OMF in 2013 with the opera L’heure espagnole (performed alongside L’enfant et les sortilèges that won a Grammy for Best Opera Recording), Mr. Denève was originally scheduled to return for the 2020 festival, which was ultimately cancelled due to the impact of COVID-19. This will mark his much-awaited return. The program will include Poulenc’s Stabat Mater and Ravel’s Daphinis et Chloé Suite No. 2. A 100-member chorus will also perform in this concert, some of whom will be chosen through an audition in Matsumoto (scheduled to be held at Kissei Bunka Hall on Saturday, February 11). Anticipations are high for a concert that will be developed together with the local community.

For the subsequent <Program B> scheduled for Saturday, September 2, world-class composer John Williams, who has been a steadfast friend of Ozawa for over 50 years, will conduct SKO. The full program will be announced at a later date, but will include iconic film music masterpieces from Star Wars, E.T., and Harry Potter.

The bond between Ozawa and Mr. Williams dates back to when Ozawa was music director of the Boston Symphony Orchestra. In the 1970s, when Mr. Williams had already established himself as a composer with many masterpieces, it was Ozawa who encouraged him to conduct and invited him in 1979 to take up the baton with the Boston Pops Orchestra. Mr. Williams went on to become music director of the Boston Pops Orchestra 1980–93, and is now its conductor laureate. He continues to be active as a conductor, having recently collaborated with the Vienna Philharmonic (January 2020), the Boston Symphony Orchestra (September 10, 2021), and the Berlin Philharmonic (October 2021), with those performances recorded live and released as CDs.

We will also present the Chamber Concerts to deliver quality chamber music, an array of open events, as well as the Concert for Children and Opera for Children inviting sixth- and seventh-graders who live in Nagano Prefecture. The entire festival lineup will be announced at a later date.
 Tickets will go on sale on Saturday, June 10. We invite you to look forward to OMF in its 32nd year.

Click here to see the profiles of conductors

OMF 30th Anniversary Special Concerts finished with a round of applause! OMF2023 will be held from Aug 20 -Sep 6!

Special performances commemorating the 30th anniversary of the establishment of Seiji Ozawa Matsumoto Festival since 1992 (formerly called Saito Kinen Festival Matsumoto) were greatly appreciated by the audience both on November 25th in Matsumoto and on November 26th in Nagano.

Maestro Andris Nelsons conducted the Saito Kinen Orchestra for the first time for this special occasion. Mo. Nelsons orchestrated Mahler's Symphony No.9 beautifully and brought out a magnificent tone from the masterful SKO. Mo. Nelsons is the active music director of Boston Symphony Orchestra, and the Festival Director Seiji Ozawa had held the same position for 29 years. No wonder why Mo. Nelsons and SKO fit like a glove.

We would like to thank approximately 3,800 audience who came to the performances at Kissei Bunka Hall and Hokuto Bunka Hall.

The 2023 Seiji Ozawa Matsumoto Festival will step forward for the next 30 years. Save your dates from August 20th to September 6th, for OMF2023. Details of the festival its be announced later. Let’s meet you all soon!

※Added on Feb 7, 2023: 2023OMF dates were changed to August 19 (sat) to September 6 (wed) .


In a historic first, Seiji Ozawa and the Saito Kinen Orchestra deliver an orchestra performance to outer space with JAXA

On Wednesday, November 23 at 6:30 PM at Kissei Bunka Hall (Nagano-ken Matsumoto Bunka Kaikan), OMF Director Seiji Ozawa conducted the Saito Kinen Orchestra (SKO) for the first time in four years (first time in five years in Matsumoto) to deliver a live stream of Beethoven’s “Egmont” Overture to astronaut Koichi Wakata, who is currently on a mission at the International Space Station (ISS) “Kibo.” This is the first time in history for an orchestra performance to be delivered live to space!

This music performance is part of the “One Earth Mission – Unite with Music” joint initiative planned by Seiji Ozawa / SKO with the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA). With the raging novel coronavirus that has spread around the world, and the chaos, suffering, and sadness from the war in Europe, this initiative was launched to deliver a message to the world that as we face this difficult era, now is not the time for division; now is the time to help and cooperate with each other as fellow citizens of Earth.

“Language, borders, culture, age, and gender are irrelevant in sensing that music is beautiful and joyous.” This is the belief of Seiji Ozawa, who has been active for over 50 years internationally on the front lines in cities such as Tokyo, Matsumoto, Vienna, Berlin, Paris, Milan, London, Toronto, Chicago, Boston, and New York.

The Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) also transcends countries and ethnicities, aiming to pursue and integrate cutting-edge scientific technologies for the advancement of humankind. There are no national borders in outer space. JAXA continues to take on life-risking challenges while coordinating with astronauts from different countries.

This year, JAXA marks its 30th anniversary since Mamori Mohri became the first Japanese astronaut to go on a space mission. The Seiji Ozawa Matsumoto Festival, which is the home of the Saito Kinen Orchestra, also marks its 30th anniversary this year. In this special year, 87-year-old Seiji Ozawa performed music with the SKO, which could be referred to as his musical family that has a strong, pure connection in the deepest way to him, and this reached astronaut Koichi Wakata at ISS to resonate in outer space. Music transcends all barriers—gender, age, ethnicity, and borders—to connect the hearts of people, and provides us with a moment to remember that we are fellow residents who live on the same planet.

The live-recorded footage of this concert will be streamed simultaneously worldwide from 12 noon December 1 (JST) on the Seiji Ozawa official YouTube channel. We invite everyone to join us in experiencing this special time of being connected to space.

One Earth Mission – Unite with Music
Seiji Ozawa / SKO x JAXA Joint Initiative

See official website for more about One Earth Mission – Unite with Music

Stream Start: December 1 (Thursday), 12 noon (JST)
Stream link:

Director Seiji Ozawa's socials are ready! Please follow.






Attention for Hokuto Bunka Hall access

Due to limited number of parking spaces, it is anticipated that the Hokuto Bunka Hall parking will be very busy on 26th of November for the Seiji Ozawa Matsumoto Festival 30th Anniversary Special Concert.

We highly recommend you to consider using public transportation. Please also be noted that there are paid parking available near the venue when the venue parking becomes full. We are looking forward to seeing you for the special concert, please plan your trip ahead.

Hokuto Bunka Hall Access

Rehearsals have started for the OMF 30th Anniversary Special Concerts!!

Rehearsals have started for the Seiji Ozawa Matsumoto Festival 30th Anniversary Special Concerts on 25th and 26th of November in Matsumoto and Nagano!

It has been 12 years since the “Special Winter Concert” in 2002 for the Saito Kinen Orchestra to perform in Matsumoto except for the summer festival. The crisp autumn air of Matsumoto city welcomed SKO and every SKO member expressed the joy of reuniting.

The SKO will perform under the baton of Andris Nelsons for the first time. Maestro Nelsons is the Music Director of the Boston Symphony Orchestra, and needless to mention, BSO holds a very important place in the Director Seiji Ozawa’s heart. Dressed in the OMF shirt, Mo. Nelsons carefully rehearsed Mahler’s last symphony No.9. The Kissei Bunka hall was filled with intricate and emotional melodies.

The concerts are just few days away!! On the day tickets will be available both on the 25h and 26th of November, don’t miss out the great performances!


OMF 30th Anniversary Special Concerts Tickets for the Day Information

OMF 30th Anniversary Special Concerts Tickets for the day information.

OMF 30th Anniversary Special Concerts Nov. 25 (fri) Matsumoto Peformance

Venue: Kissei Bunka Hall
Tickets for the Day Sales Start: 17:30
Ticket Price: S 22,000 yen / A 18,000 yen(All seats reserved)

Door Open: 18:30
Start: 19:00

OMF 30th Anniversary Special Concerts Nov. 26 (Sat) Nagano Peformance

Venue: Hokuto Bunka Hall
Tickets for the Day Sales Start: 13:30
Ticket Price: S 22,000 yen / A 18,000 yen(All seats reserved)

Door Open: 14:30
Start: 15:00