October 30, 2018
Argentine Ministry Awards Daisaku Ikeda for Promotion of the Arts and Contribution to Peace
Argentine Vice President Michetti (4th from left), Minister Lombardi (3rd from left), SGI Vice President Ikeda (3rd from right) and others in a commemorative photo following the conferral
On October 30, 2018, Min-On Concert Association founder and SGI President Daisaku Ikeda was presented with the “Blue Award for Arts and Peace” by the Federal System of Media and Public Content of Argentina for his promotion of Argentina’s performing arts and culture and for his contributions to spreading friendship and peace across the global community. Min-On Concert Association President Kazuto Ito and Mr. Ikeda’s son, SGI Vice President Hiromasa Ikeda, were part of a delegation from Tokyo representing Mr. Daisaku Ikeda. The conferral, which took place at the Kirchner Cultural Center in Buenos Aries, was attended by Argentine President Mauricio Macri, Vice President Gabriella Michetti, Minister of the Federal System of Media and Public Content Hernán Lombardi, Director Gustavo Mozzi of the Kirchner Cultural Center and other guests including those from the world of Argentine Tango.
In a citation, Minister Lombardi noted that this year marks the 120th anniversary of diplomatic relations between Argentina and Japan as well as the 50th installment of the “Min-On Tango Series.” Min-On shares a rich history with Argentina through its annual Japan tours inviting legendary tango artists and composers to perform throughout Japan. The tango series was largely influenced by Mr. Ikeda’s friendship with the late renowned tango Maestro Osvaldo Pugliese and the late tango composer and pianist Mariano Mores.
Minister Lombardi stated that the award ceremony, while officially signifying a strengthening of ties between the two countries, also represented a shared commitment to working for the betterment of global society and the further strengthening of cultural exchanges. Expressing his deep appreciation and respect for Mr. Ikeda’s contributions to the advancement of culture and peace, he reiterated Mr. Ikeda’s words that art and culture are expressions of the heart that transcend national boundaries and bring people together.
Argentine Vice President Gabriella Michetti and Kirchner Cultural Center Director Gustavo Mozzi also gave welcoming words in which they both reaffirmed the role of cultural exchanges in uniting people.
A dynamic tango concert and dance followed the award ceremony
A commemorative tango concert and dance followed the award ceremony. Notable Argentine tango maestros Roberto Alvarez, Fernando Marzan and Fabio Hager, all of who have previously toured with Min-On, performed music alongside tango dancers.
Prior to the award ceremony, SGI Vice President Ikeda and Min-On President Ito met with Argentine President Macri and Minister Lombardi at the President’s executive mansion in Bueno Aires, and later with Vice President Michetti at the Kirchner Culture Center. President Macri conveyed his appreciation to Min-On for having widely introduced tango to Japanese audiences, remarking that the deepening of ties between Argentina and Japan owed itself to tango. Vice President Michetti expressed her joy in knowing how much the Japanese people have embraced Argentine culture, one very different from their own.
[Adapted from articles in the November 2, 2018, issue of the Seikyo Shimbun, Soka Gakkai, Japan]