At this point in time, how can we rebuild our relationship with nature?

By merging voices of different cultures and noises from our environments,

Resonance takes a closer look at our fundamental experience of sound.

Let us free our voices and experience a shared sense of harmony.

To see it grow beyond the bounds of language and race.



Resonance is the second feature film directed by Toshinori Tanaka, since his first film Super Local Hero. The film follows Aoyagi in post-disaster Japan as he attempt to bring people’s consciousness to harmony through his sound project Circle Voice. To help spread an experience initially only available for the participants, the film was created to give focus on the meaning and the motivation behind the project. With sonic and cinematic effect, it aims to resonate with the audience on a visceral level. By the end, the audience will leave with the sense of having experienced Circle Voice.


Takuji grew up in Tokyo, living with his guitarist grandfather and mother. Years later, he too became a musician and a father of two daughters. He revisits the vibrant city, looking for his roots through the lens of his camera.  From his mother’s story of the late grandfather, Takuji finds a way into his own musical background. In his youth, his grandfather had gone to Europe to learn the guitar, with dreams to use music for peace. Tracing his path, Takuji too, finds himself in a European city with a warm welcome from its local musicians. With his project Circle Voice, he sought to bring people and nature together through the simple act of singing.
Resonance is a space for these voices to meet from all over the world, transcending the limits of time and place. The voices overlap, whirling its way up to the sky.

This is a story about the immeasurable bond between a father and his daughter. It is also a story of an instrument, the guitar which travels between cultures alongside its respective owners.

Resonance is a documentary that takes its viewers into the territory of fantasy. To make this effect, the sounds are carefully structured for its viewers to focus back on the senses. In the last scene, the film softly urges its viewers to look outside of themselves, to feel at one with others and their surroundings.
The film end as ‘Circle Voice’ begins.




Circle Voice

Circle Voice is a participatory concert in which Takuji along with the audience create a melodic sound-scape, using tribal sounds and scat singing methods.
The phrases given to the audience, with no particular meaning, are sounds that anyone of any race can sing along to.
On the day, individual voices naturally come together to compose an audience-specific harmony, making each event unique. The fresh, rippling sounds of the voices follow the ancient rhythm of the guitar, unearthing something buried deep within our DNAs.
Music reminds us that we are always a vital part of an entity. This is one of the most important effects it has on us since the beginning of time.








Having experienced the disaster of 3.11 in Japan, I am always facing towards one direction.
How can this world become a peaceful place?
If we can bring this planet to a new state of peace, what would it look like?
And what is asked of me to achieve such state?
Filmmaking, for me, is just one way to pursue these dreams.

I learnt to make films by experimenting; from pre-production to screenings, it is always important for me to explore new ways, to challenge the common sense of storytelling in the process.

I met the protagonist of this film in the process of my last film, for which he made the music for. It was then that I was introduced to ‘Circle Voice’, a sound project which he was touring across Japan. In return for his brilliant contribution to my last film, I started to document his project in exchange. His concept of ‘bringing people’s voices to resonate with each other’ unearthed something in me that I had been searching for. I needed to help spread this project to a wider audience and believed that my skill as a filmmaker could be of significant use to further disseminate its message. While I continued to film his project, I started to structurise the film by writing its script.

Takuji’s project requires its participants to bring their own voices to take part. How should one transform a sound project into the realm of a screen? As a filmmaker, it was vital that I constantly questioned my motives in the process and proved its purpose on the screen.

To embrace the rigour and the raw nature of documentaries, the script was continually adjusted according to the real events. Takuji’s life intertwined with the narrative as he intricately responded and resonated with the script.
During the production process, my wife became pregnant with our first child and the filming came to a halt when she was born. In caring for the newborn, my daughter gave me the opportunity to grow as an artist, bringing me new visions and ideas. The delay in the production was not an obstruction but gave a new level of depth to the film. One of the themes is the relation between a father and a daughter, which is strongly affected by my own experience as an artist.
This film is a message to the future generations; a strong hope for a more peaceful world. It is framed by my own daughter’s birth and it will grow and take off in to the world, just like what we wish for our child.








Cast: Takuji Aoyagi, Markus Acher, Maren Hirokawa, Amuri Hirokawa, Seiko Obara, Yasumasa Obara and Hochzeitskapelle
Director, Editor, Screenplay and Producer: Toshinori Tanaka
Cinematography: Yuki Hoshino, Toshinori Tanaka, Haruna Kawanishi
Sound Recording: Yosuke Fujimoto, Shinya Kitamura
VFX: Shigenori Ono
Music: Takuji Aoyagi, KAMA AINA, Hochzeitskapelle
Sound Design: Takuji Aoyagi
Translation: Akitsu Yamagishi, Kazumi Yamagishi, Shunsuke Ito, Haruna Yoshioka




Takuji Aoyagi



He was born into a family of classical guitarists in Tokyo on December 8th, 1971. He picked up a guitar at the age of 3 and started learning the piano and percussions.

In 1990, after the appearance on the audition TV program, He made a debut with the band, Little Creatures.
In 1991, he studied abroad in England. Living in England for one year, he encountered live sounds of musicians, who gathered from all over the world. After coming back to Japan, he had a number of albums released with the band, Double Famous, and as a solo musician under the names of KAMA AINA and Takuji Aoyagi.
He had an album of KAMA AINA released from labels in England and Denmark and toured in those countries.
He also produced music collections of Sicily and Hawaii Islands, an album of musicians playing at Metro stations in Paris, a Mix CD of a collaboration with a fashion designer, and various other artists.
He composed music for film, theatre, and TV program and presented his works as a poet and a photographer as well.

In 2010, he moved to Yanbaru (the northern mountain area) in Okinawa. He started learning folk musics in various areas of Japan and holistic therapy. In 2013, as a new project, he started “CIRCLE VOICE”, a participatory concert where the audiences voices flow in whirls, in Yanbaru, the mountain area of Northern Okinawa.

In 2016, he published a picture book “Kagaribi (Bonfire)” and released UA’s “Japo” which he produced and Little Creatures’ “Michi no Album (The Unknown Album)”. He is currently touring nationwide with both of them.




Toshinori Tanaka


Born 1981 in Fukuyama city, Hiroshima, Japan, Tanaka is a Filmmaker, a Lecturer at Fukuyama University and the Vice Director of Nonprofit Organization iD Onomichi.

After studying Filmmaking at Cavendish College London, Tanaka worked on many films, commercials and music videos within the UK. Following the Earthquake disaster in northeast Japan, he returned to settle in a small seaside town of Onomichi, in Hiroshima prefecture.

His feature documentary film Super Local Hero (2014) shot in Onomichi was widely received across the globe, becoming part of the official listing at 30th Warsaw Film Festival (Poland) and Camera Japan Festival 2014 (Netherlands). It continues to tour in and out of Japan.






COMPLETION: August 2019  




RESONANCE-presskit EN 1127.pdf
PDFファイル 2.6 MB