Date: 6:00pm EDT April 17, 2015
WAC Cherry Blossom Festival & The Washington Toho Koto Society
The Washington Toho Koto Society was founded in 1971 by Kyoko Okamoto to promote the understanding and appreciation of Japanese koto music. The Society participates in many national and local community events, including the Lantern Lighting Ceremony which traditionally opens the National Cherry Blossom Festival in Washington DC every spring. In October 2003, the Washington Toho Koto Society was very honored to receive a Special Award from the Foreign Minister of Japan, Yoriku Kawaguchi, in recognition of over thirty years of contributing excellent performances spreading koto music in the United States and promoting mutual understanding and friendship between the two countries.
Kyoko Okamoto is a graduate of the Kyoto University of Foreign Studies. She was certified as Teacher of Koto following completion of her training in the Ikuta school of koto in Japan. She teaches privately in the Washington metropolitan area and holds faculty appointments at the University of Maryland, College Park and Baltimore County campuses, and the George Mason University, Fairfax, Virginia. Her lecture/demonstrations and recitals have attracted college and community audiences in the Midwest, New England, and the Mid-Atlantic states. She has recorded for film productions by the Smithsonian Institution and the National Symphony Orchestra, and with other groups of Western musicians.
Jonathan McCollum, Ph.D.
Ken Schweitzer, D.M.A