Catherine Balmer-Magnin, flute
Hélène Seiyu 聖 優 Codjo, shakuhachi

Duo Satsuzen


As the wind suddenly blows strongly
The shakuhachi playing muraiki
Meets the silver flute in the silence.

DUO SATSUZEN is a unique formation that started from a friendship of more than 30 years and a shared passion for the flute, the flutes, which invites each flutist to discover the other one’s musical world. The meeting between the delicate Japanese music shaped with silence and the virtuosity of Western Classical musical draws a palette of shadows and lights. Through the love of nature – trees, wind, birds – DUO SATSUZEN’s music unfolds as an universal language.

DUO SATSUZEN aims to give new sound experiences to their audience and inspire composers to write music for them combining Japanese and Western musical traditions. 

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World premieres

In early 2021, Duo SATSUZEN received two new compositions dedicated to them:
– “Ellipse” by Elizabeth BROWN (for shakuhachi and flute, commissioned by the Hijiri Shakuhachi Foundation for Duo SATSUZEN.)
– “Ginyo” 銀葉 (for shakuhachi and alto flute) by Atsuki SUMI.

Listen to the World Premieres of each piece:

ELLIPSE by Elizabeth Brown, for flute & shakuhachi
GINYO by Atsuki SUMI, for flute and shakuhachi

Concerts Reviews

A feast for the ear!”  Greet van Keulen 

Two magnificent musicians who are perfectly tuned to their instrument and who have developed together, in addition to amazing playing modes, a special sense of timing.”  Gerard van Wolferen 

How does this combination of instruments produce wonderful and enchanting colours! What an oasis of tranquility emanated from this concert, a real moment of contemplation!” Jos Brommer 

The physical and sound landscapes are gradually revealed to the public thanks to a successful combination of traditional and modern music. Surprisingly harmoniously, the transverse flute and the Japanese shakuhachi portray landscapes, birds, movement, and tranquility.” Luc-Jan Jaarhoven 

A powerful and calm world of sounds. Varied and balanced program, as much by the structure of the program as by the musicality and the precision of its execution.” Esther Konijnenberg. 


HA-MORI by Atsuki Sumi

ACADIA by Elizabeth Brown

Photo impressions

Photos by Pierre-Alain Balmer.

Hélène Seiyu Codjo

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