Washita Ichiman Concert Brings Young and Old Together

“Washita Ichiman” concert at the Doris Duke Theater and Kona’s LEAD Theater brought surprise and emotional experiences that went beyond the stage. Tomoko Uehara showed a side that most people didn’t expect, while Atsuko Tamagusuku brought the audience to experience her story through her animated dance choreography.

Ukwanshin Kabudan brought the two cousins to Hawaii and asked them to present a more traditional show that

to just be looked at. The audience should feel some participation, whether it be physically or emotionally. The performer should also feel the audience and not be an idol on stage. That is a western concept. A word that would best describe the experience is “Yuimaaru”, or heartfelt exchange. It’s giving from one’s

would target the second generation, while exposing the younger generations to Okinawa “shima uta” and dances. The goal was to bring the ejoyment of both the performers and audience together instead of just entertainment. Okinawan entertainment is not meant

to just be looked at. The audience should feel some participation, whether it be physically or emotionally. The performer should also feel the audience and not be an idol on stage. That is a western concept. A word that would best describe the experience is “Yuimaaru”, or heartfelt exchange. It’s giving from one’s

self while not expecting anything in return, but also to receive and to give back unconditionally.

Many in the audience who knew Tomoko from her Rinken Band performances here and in Okinawa, were totally surprised to see her relaxed and at times playful on stage.

“This was more than I ever talked on stage in all my experience with RinkenBand!”, said Tomoko. “I just felt relaxed because of the audience. It was fun!”. Atsuko Tamagusuku remarked after the concerts,“Being here in Hawaii made us realize that we are missing a lot in Okinawa. We’ve lost the real Okinawanness of performing, but after performing here in Hawaii, we felt what it was like for our sempai who preceeded uson stage. They understood what it was to connect with the audience. We have a lot to think about when we go back, and I will pass on my experience to my students and peers.”

Tomoko also surprised everyone by playing Okinawan folk music, and leaving out Rinken Band songs. She showed her connection to her roots, and commented on the need to reconnect, especially after the passing of her father a few years ago.

On the Big Island, the fledgling Kona Okinawa Club, and veteran Kohala Okinawa club worked hard to bring close to 200 together there. The energy and hospitality on Moku o Keawe was awesome!

Ippe Nifwedebiru to all of our volunteers, Young Okinawans of Hawaii, Itoman Club, Honolulu Museum of Arts, Big Island Clubs and friends, and to our audience!

Click this link to see clips of the concert.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K7y7I2QGlrA&feature=relmfu

1 thought on “Washita Ichiman Concert Brings Young and Old Together

  1. BeauRyan Kennedy

    This was really a special performance. I am extremely grateful that performers of that caliber found the time to share with us their Itoman. I can only hope that these revelations will help perpetuate the heartfelt expressions of culture and peace.

Comments are closed.