Hinode Taiko

Hinode Taiko

Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada

Founded 1982

Basic Information

    Incorporated as a non-profit charitable organization since 1997; Board of Directors is elected by membership annually

Background Information

Group's Mission and Motivation

From Hinode Taiko's constitution:
(1) to learn a unique form of Japanese music, the art of taiko;
(2) to create an awareness of taiko through public performances;
(3) to instruct all interested persons; and
(4) to raise monies for the purpose of fulfilling the aforesaid objectives.

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

Hinode Taiko's goals have always been to learn the art of taiko, to promote taiko through public performances, and to instruct those interested in the art of Japanese drumming. All members have a voice in any decision-making process and are expected to show commitment, respect, and responsibility for each other and for the art of taiko.
Hinode Taiko currently consists of a performing ensemble (Hinode Taiko) and a recreational drumming group (Genki Daiko).

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

Founded in 1982 by a core group of enthusiasts who participated in a taiko workshop sponsored by the Manitoba Japanese Canadian Citizens' Association.

List of Founding Members

Founding members, still active (emeritus members): Florence Mitani; Sheila Ozamoto; Tak Tonogai

List of Current Members

Performing members (as of July 2005): Sheila Ozamoto; Pamela Okano; Margaret McKenty; Sandi Utsunomiya; Makoto Ono; Kevin Utunomiya; Shig Saito; Peggy Emmond; Karleen Manchanda; Torrie Saito. Apprentices (as of July 2005): Melanie Sweetland; Beth Evans; Laurie Badiou; Patrick Dunlop

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

The racial and ethnic diversity of Winnipeg has always been apparent in the membership of Hinode Taiko. Performers' experience ranges from less than 2 years (apprentice) to 23 years (founding/emeritus).

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

Hinode Taiko continues its strong involvement in Winnipeg's Japanese-Canadian community, as well as a broader base of community recognition and support.

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

Permanent rehearsal location and drum storage through the Manitoba Japanese Canadian Cultural Centre.

Performances, Recordings, Publications

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

A partial list of performances:
-Extasia International Taiko Festival, Matto, Japan, 1999
-Setagaya Matsuri, Tokyo, Japan, 1999
-Canadian Embassy, Tokyo, Japan, 1999
-1st North American Taiko Conference "Taiko Jam" concert, Los Angeles, 1997
-4th North American Taiko Conference "Taiko Jam" concert, Sacramento, 2003
-Saskatoon Folk Festival (multiple)
-Winnipeg Folk Festival
-Grey Cup Festival, Regina SK, 1995
-Thunder Bay Dragon Boat Festival, 2003, 2004
-San Jose Summer Series, San Jose, 2002
-Missouri Botanical Gardens Japanese Festival, St. Louis, 2003, 2004
-International Winter Cities Conference, Winnipeg, 1996
-Winnipeg International Children's Festival (multiple)
-Winnipeg International Kite Festival (multiple)
-Festival du Voyageur, St. Boniface, 2004
-Children's Hospital Foundation Teddy Bears' Picnic (multiple)
-Manitoba Dragon Boat Races (multiple)
-Manitoba Marathon finish line drum-a-thon (2001-date)
-Folklorama Festival of Nations Opening Ceremonies (multiple)
-Folklorama Japan Pavilion (1984 - date)
-Asia Heritage Week gala concert (multiple)
-Canadian Taiko Festivals 1991, 1994, 1997
-"New Traditions" (concert), 1999, 2000, 2002
-"Taste of Taiko" concert-banquet (1999 - 2004)

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

Founding workshop was conducted by members of Vancouver's Katari Taiko. Hinode has since worked with PJ and Roy Hirabayashi of San Jose, Seiichi Tanaka-sensei of San Francisco, Kiyoshi Nagata of Toronto, Kevin Higa of Los Angeles, and Yoshikazu Fujimoto, Yoko Fuijimoto, Chieko Kojima, Eiichi Saito, Kazuki Imagai, Masami Miyazaki and Kaoru Watanabe of Kodo.

Audio & Video Recordings
List a selection of publicly accessible audio and/or video recordings featuring the ensemble.

Debut CD "Hinode Taiko" on independent release April 2004.

Signature Works
Please include title, composer, date of composition, special reason(s) for composition, and what the work represents to the group.

"Uma" (Kyra Wong, 1991) has become well-known to the North American taiko community through Hinode's performances at the NATC's Taiko Jam in 1997 and 2003. The group continues to add to its original repertoire.


Pamela Okano
180 McPhillips Street


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