Kaze Daiko

Kaze Daiko

Seattle, Washington, United States

Founded January 2000

Basic Information

    practices held at NISEI VETERANS HALL
    director
    cultural heritage, performance, growth

Background Information

Group's Mission and Motivation

KAZE DAIKO is a Japanese-American performing taiko group for youth ages 10 to 18 years old. In KD, we strive to develop an appreciation of Japanese music and movement; to learn about Japanese and Japanese American culture, history and heritage; to help members develop and maintain a sense of identity, pride and self-confidence; to reach out to a broader community in support of diversity, tolerance and mutual education; to foster teamwork and unity of purpose.

Membership in Kaze Daiko is a family activity, where the kids learn and practice, and perform at various local venues. The adults provide support for the kids to achieve these objectives, as well as many other responsibilities.

Structure and Philosophy
Describe the ensemble's organizational structure and philosophy, including leadership structure, membership policy, and instructional process.

KD is a youth performing group based in and serving the local Japanese American community. We have a Director, an Assistant Instructor, a Parent Support Group, and Performing Members. Each Performing Member pays monthly dues to cover costs of practice hall rental, instructor stipends, costume and equipment purchase, and other group expenses. Parental involvement is mandatory, and parents are responsible for all logistical and support functions of the group, including bookings, finances, drum-making, stage crew, transportation, etc with the help and advice of instructors and performing members. Performance income goes into a collective pot and is awarded as scholarships to Performing Members at the end of the year.

Group History
Describe how, where, and why the ensemble was founded. What was its inspiration?

The founding members of Kaze Daiko started training with Tsunami Taiko in 1998-99 (Tsunami was the first youth taiko group in the state of Washington, starting in 1990). When Tsunami's founder and long-time director retired in 1999, TT separated into two groups. Tsunami Taiko matured into a a college age/young adult group with the older/more experienced members while the younger/less experienced members and parents sought out a new instructor and formed Kaze Daiko as a new youth group in January 2000.

List of Founding Members

Founding Memmbers: Griffin Joko-Fujimoto, Marisa Kawada, Leigh Momii, Alaina Mori, Cara Mori and Kanae Nakamura
Assistant Instructor: Todd Miyata
Lead Instructor/Director: Stan Shikuma

List of Current Members

Ryan Abe, Lisa Day, Griffin Joko-Fujimoto, Marisa Kawada, Kai Killebrew, Leigh Momii, Robin Momii, Kanae Nakamura, Sho Sugihara and Ben Turnock
Danny Akira Hayman (on college leave)

Membership Composition
(i.e. ethnicity, generation, average years of experience, musical backgrounds, and motivation for playing)

- 5 female, 5 male
- ages 13-21 years old
- range of taiko experience from 1 to 7 years
- backgrounds in violin, hula, Irish clogging, piano, baseball, softball, cross-country running, computer gaming, soccer, track & field, tennis, wu shu and Starbucks
- motivations: love of taiko, performing onstage, cultural heritage, socializing with friends

Community
Description of the group's community - regional, ethnic, social, etc.

Seattle-area Japanese American Community
KD is grateful to the Nisei Veterans Committee for allowing us to practice in their clubhouse.

Biggest Changes
Describe two of the biggest changes that have characterized the group's development since its founding

1) little kids are growing into young adults
2) adding new members changes the group dynamics as well as skill mix and age mix

Performances, Recordings, Publications

Performances
List a selection of your regular performance venues (for example, Denver Sakura Matsuri, Seabrook obon, business conventions, Manzanar Pilgrimage, Maui Marathon, etc.)

Seattle Cherry Blossom and Japanese Cultural Fesival
Northwest Folklife Festival
Aki Matsuri (Bellevue, WA)
Japanese Language Camp -- where we have to introduce ourselves and our songs all in nihongo (Japanese)

Instructors, Teachers & Mentors
List the instructors, teachers and mentors who have worked with the ensemble.

Scot Kamimae -- founder/instructor of Tsunami Taiko (the "parent group" of Kaze Daiko)
Stan Shikuma -- Director/lead instructor for Kaze Daiko
Todd Miyata -- Assisant Instructor for Kaze Daiko
Kenny Endo -- mentor and frequent workshop leader for KD
Kelsey and Tiffany Furuta -- members of TaikoProject and Tsunami Taiko, who helped teach KD "Omiyage"

Taiko Collaborators
List a selection of taiko players or groups that have collaborated with the ensemble.

Seattle Kokon Taiko
One World Taiko
Chibi Taiko



Contact

Stan Shikuma
3214 - 24th Ave S, Seattle, WA 98144
Sktaiko@aol.com
www.kazedaiko.com

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A project of the Japanese American National Museum


Major support by The Nippon Foundation