History & Achievements of Tsukasa Taiko 3



History and Achievements of Tsukasa Taiko 3

Tsukasa Taiko at JASC


In 2004 Tsukasa moved and established its artist residency at the Japanese Service Committee of Chicago where they currently reside. Shortly after in 2006, Yoshihashi retired. Amy Homma took over Yoshihashi’s leadership and became the head instructor and performer for Tsukasa Taiko. Homma had been playing with Yoshihashi throughout Tsukasa’s earlier years. Aoki took this opportunity to create a full-time position for Homma. She became the first full-time, professional taiko player in Chicago. This was an important benchmark in Chicago’s Japanese American cultural scene as there was no full time performer in the traditional arts outside perhaps the martial arts. Homma’s position effectively distinguished Tsukasa Taiko as an organization fully committed to establishing the taiko player as a qualified, musical artist. Homma was the only multicultural, bilingual representative of the community arts. She studied under Aoki to cultivate her artistic career, and performed in many local, national, and international professional scenes. She was the first community leader to officially perform in Japan, Poland and travelled multiple times to San Francisco.

After Homma’s retirement in 2011 Tsukasa Taiko enlisted the help of Noriko Sugiyama who was a member of Ayutsubo Taiko in Shizuoka, Japan. Sugiyama represents a milestone for AIRMW and the Chicago taiko art scene. She is the first drummer to be working officially in Chicago with a VISA. Her involvement has been extensively to manage and expand the children’s classes at the main JASC dojo as well as Mitsuwa Marketplace, which has been Tsukasa’s second location for the last few years. Tsukasa has now over 60 members with almost 30 children.


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Tatsu Aoki's Re: Rooted
re: Rooted,  July 27, 2006

July 27th, Thursday, 6:30pm, free
Made In Chicago: World Class Jazz
Tatsu Aoki's re:ROOTED Project

with special guests Jon Jang and Francis Wong
Millenium Park - Pritzker Pavilion
Downtown Chicago

Tatsu Aoki's re:ROOTED Project,
with special guests Jon Jang and Francis Wong

Made in Chicago: World Class Jazz Asia-Chicago

July 27th, 2006
Jay Pritzker Pavilion

Tatsu Aoki's re:Rooted Project is the culmination of an exploration of Asian identity and cultural intergration in three different communities. Marrying traditional and unconventional musical instruments and forms; the Re:Rooted Project also blends the unique perspectives of older and younger generations of musicians. The concert features pianist Jon Jang and saxophonist Francis Wong.

Poland Tour, Miyumi Project

Saturday, November 25, 2006
Poland Tour
MADE IN CHICAGO, Festiwal Jazzowy
Tatsu Aoki - bass
Mwata Bowden - sax,did
Hide Yoshihashi taiko
Amy Homma - taiko


May 20, Sunday, 4pm 2007
Fireflies in Flight
Tha Auditorium, Walter Payton College Prep High School,
1034 North Wells, Chicago IL

Tsukasa Taiko at JASC

June 23, 2009
Bunka shutter BX Hall,
Tokyo, Japan

A Chizuru Kai (Chizuru Kineya) concert
featuring Tsukasa Taiko, Toyoaki Shamisen, and Genryu Arts


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