Japan Data Archive

About Japan > Japanese Culture > 

What kind of classical music is popular in Japan?

Although Japanese tastes are ot so different from those of the rest of the world, there are two compositions that are especially popular among the Japanese.
One is Vivaldi's Four Seasons, particularly the rendition by the I Musici Orchestra, which is the best-selling classical recording ever in Japan.
The other is Beethoven's Ninth Symphony with chorus.
At the end of the year, concert performances of the Ninth are held everywhere, and many amateur singers look forward to singing in these choruses.
Beethoven's Fifth is also popular, and it is not an exaggeration to say that everybody knows the "da-da-da-da" opening.
Next in popularity comes Chopin, who is a particular favorite with young women.
It is fair to say that generally the Japanese like the music of the romantics best.