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Kenny Endo kicks off
Eternal Energy tour

The Kenny Endo Taiko Ensemble of Tokyo kicked off its 1998 touring season with an inspired performance to a near capacity audience in Los Angeles at the Japan America Theater.

Kenny's artistry and presentation was described by Gerald Yoshitomi, Executive Director of the Japanese American Cultural and Community Center (JACCC) as the most memorable concert presented at the theater to date. Mr. Yoshitomi said Kenny's pursuit and dedication to Taiko -- stemming from his humble beginnings with Kinara Taiko of Los Angeles in 1975 to earning the distinction of becoming the first non-Japanese national to receiving a natori (stage name and master's license) in classical Japanese drumming (hogaku hayashi) and taking his music and traveling the world as it's ambassador -- has been an inspiration to all lovers of Taiko Music.

The Honorable Kathryn Doi Todd, newly elected Chairwoman of the Board of Directors of the JACCC said it is her hope the inspiring performance of Kenny Endo may push others to dream and pursue their artistry.

Executive Producer Duane Ebata of the JACCC noted his as well as the Japan American Theaters' long support and fruitful relationship with Kenny and commitment for continued support.

That feeling was most prevalent in the enthusiastic audience with many of the major Taiko Organizations in attendance such as .Kokoro from Long Beach, Kodama, Zendeko, Venice Taiko, Koshin, and Kinnara Taiko groups

Members of Kenny's ensemble were featured throughout the concert: critically acclaimed Latin Percussionist Yoshinori Nomi, Kyosuke Suzuki, leading Edo Sato Kagura (festival & Shinto Music & Dance) musician; Hideaki Kuribayashi on 17 string bass koto, Masato Baba & Taro Kobayashi on Taiko and Ted Piltzecker on Vibraphone and percussion.

Many in the audience were also delighted to see Masato (Maz) Baba adding his Taiko Artistry to the ensemble. Maz's roots in music began at an early age with his parents, critically acclaimed saxophonist & Taiko drummer Russel Baba and Kenny's Tour will move on to Minneapolis, New York, Cincinnati, Philadelphia, North Carolina, Tampa, and Washington D.C. Kenny will then head on to Lincoln Center Institute in New York to work in residency from mid April thru May.

Kenny Endo Taiko Ensemble of Tokyo
USA Tour Dates

3/16  Minneapolis Children's Theater Minneapolis
3/20  Japan Society Concert New York City
3/24  Japan America Society Concert Cinncinatti
3/28  International House Concert Philadelphia
3/31  Japan America Society Charlotte
4/3  University of Florida - Tampa Tampa
4/8-10  Kennedy Center D.C.
4/11  Cherry Blossom Festival & Parade D.C.
4/12  Public Concert at Kennedy Center D.C.
4/15 - 5/15  Residency at Lincoln Center Insitute

Release date: 980315



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