Recording of Japanese actress Yoshiko Yamaguchi's 1950 U.S. concert uncovered
TOKYO (Kyodo) -- A 1950 recording of a U.S. concert by Yoshiko Yamaguchi, a China-born Japanese singer and actress who won fame in China, Hong Kong and the United States, as well as Japan, has been discovered by a U.S. researcher.
"I'm surprised with the clear sound," the performer, Yoshiko Yamaguchi, said after listening to the recording discovered by University of Chicago professor Michael Bourdaghs. "I can recall (the concert) with fondness and am very impressed."
The concert was held in Sacramento, California, judging from the recorded speech by its mayor, during Yamaguchi's first visit to the United States.
The 50-minute recording includes six tunes performed by Yamaguchi before an audience of Japanese-Americans, who had been forcibly interned during World War II.
Recalling the concert, Yamaguchi, 92, said, "I sang with hope that I could offer consolation to the Japanese-Americans, as I heard that they had gone through hardships during the war."
The recording, confirmed by the University of Chicago professor as of the 1950 concert by Yamaguchi, is owned by a collector in Canada.
Born in northeast in China in 1920, Yamaguchi debuted in 1938 under the name of Li Xianglan by hiding her Japanese identity, and broke through as a star through her beauty and singing talent.
After returning to Japan in 1946, she drew popularity as an actress and singer, while appearing in some Hollywood movies. She also served as a House of Councillors member between 1974 and 1992.
August 18, 2012(Mainichi Japan)