Meet the Japan Festival 2017 Performers
Kagura by Surapsari
Kagura is a centuries-old ritual mask dance-drama originally performed at Japanese Shinto shrines.
Lucky gods and serpent slayers from mythical folklore are brought to life through the visually stimulating and often humorous enactment of storytelling.
Surapsari is an accomplished performing artist specializing in traditional dance and theatre from Bali, Java, India, and Japan.
After mastering Balinese dance in various forms and styles under the training of internationally acclaimed dancers, Surapsari returned to Japan to study Edo Kagura.
Tamagusuku-ryu Kayono-kai - Ryukyuan Classical Dance Research Institute
Kayonokai was founded in 1985 by Kayoko Miyazato in Uruma City, Okinawa, Japan.
Miyazato is known for having created a new style of Okinawan traditional dance, and her groundbreaking performances have drawn a great deal of attention to her Ryukyuan Classical Dance Research Institute. Her popularity has led to many collaborations with performing artists of varying genres. Most notably, Miyazato performed at the Great Ryukyu Kingdom Festival, the World Uchinanchu Festival, and the creative opera Furuya Chiru Story.
In addition, Miyazato and Kayono-kai have worked tirelessly in volunteer activities and at charitable events.
For such great work, Miyazato was honored with the Okinawa Prefecture Culture Prize incentive award and the Uruma City Cultural Association Award, the city's social education service award.
In recent years, Miyazato has partnered with Kozue and Ryujin Legend to produce the concert series, KAFU, which has furthered her professional success around the world.
Geta Dance by Miyuki Matsunaga
GETA DANCE ART© was created in 2015 by Miyuki Matsunaga. The signature performance art style blends elements of traditional Japanese dance, modern dance, and chakra vocals with live calligraphy and painting.
Miyuki discovered her passion for dance at the late age of 19. Through hard work and countless hours of practice, she became a primary member of the professional Japanese dance team M-Trap’s and performed with them throughout Japan for eight years.
While on tour, Miyuki worked to further develop her skills and abilities as a dancer and singer. Her efforts lead to a partnership with two other singers and the formation of the group Girls-Trap’s, which performed on television and radio as well as at festivals and other events.
Miyuki came to the United States after winning a scholarship to participate in the Winners USA Dance Program. She settled in Los Angeles where she has been working in film, television, and theater. Miyuki is also a certified yoga instructor.
Kaminari Taiko was founded in 1996 by Jay Mochizuki along with a number of talented musicians from diverse backgrounds and ethnicities.
Kaminari's unique style of dynamic taiko performance is inspired by the traditional values of Japanese art and propulsive, toe-tapping world beats. The group's high-energy shows are powered by an arsenal of over 30 professional-quality taiko.
Kaminari Taiko enjoys sharing the spirit of taiko with audiences throughout Texas and beyond. Over the past eighteen years, Kaminari has toured to over 20 cites, performed hundreds of concerts for live audiences exceeding 150,000, and developed into a prominent performing taiko group.