JAPAN-AMERICA SOCIETY OF WASHINGTON, INC. 202-833-2210 info@jaswdc.org

Performers from all over the country and Japan come to the Sakura Matsuri to bring over 30 hours of live musical and dance performances on four stages: ANA‘s Capitol Stage, the Sakura Stage, and our J-POP Stage.

In addition, over 200 martial artists will be demonstrating their skills all day on the Martial Arts Stage.



Star Alliance

“I brought a taiko drum from Japan for the traditional music performances!” – Sakura-chan
Performers from Japan
Kiwi & The PapayaMangoes
This is Tact Hirose’s artistic project creating “Tokyo Down Town Rare groove”! Kiwi & The PapayaMangoes a.k.a. “KPM” is a Tokyo-based collective of traditional and experimental musicians that formed in 2009. The group combines the musical style of Japanese traditional/modern dance-pop music and some immigrant’s music (Brazillian forró, Indian traditional, African etc.) with elements of reggae&dub. folk, funk, and rock.
Kana Uemura is a Gold record-selling singer, songwriter, and guitarist from the Kansai district of Japan. She is best known for her song “Goddess of the Bathroom”, an acoustic ballad about her grandmother, which became a #1 hit in 2010. That year she also won two Japan Record Awards: Best Song and Best Songwriter of the Year with her album “Pieces of Me”. She credits Julie Andrews performance in The Sound of Music as her inspiration to write, sing, and play music. Since signing with King Records in 2005, Kana Uemura has released nine studio albums, thirteen singles, an English songs cover album, and 16 music videos.
Tamagawa University Dance and Taiko Group
It is our annual honor to welcome Tamagawa University Dance and Taiko Group to the Sakura Matsuri. Their thundering taiko drumming merged with traditional Japanese dancing is a perennial favorite! Enjoy the new performances of drummers and dancers from Tamagawa University, one of the top-ranking taiko groups in Japan who are students at Japan’s top performing arts university.
Samurai Sword Soul
Samurai Sword Soul is the only theater company in New York which employs TATE (Japanese sword stage fighting) in their demonstrations and samurai dramas. SSS’s mission is to spread the Bushi-Do, The Way of the Samurai, and to introduce TATE to people who are not familiar with it. SSS believes their samurai spirits reach the audiences of all ethnicities, ages, and genders. They regard the Samurai Virtues: Rectitude, Courage, Benevolence, Respect, Honesty, Honor, and Loyalty as the code of conduct that is still relevant in our time.
D. A. K.
Awa Odori is the most famous of many dance festivals held across Japan during the Obon season in mid-August. Awa is the former name for Tokushima Prefecture while Odori meansdance. A team of Awa Odori dancers will be coming to Sakura Matsuri this year.
Toshihiko “TOSHI” Nakazawa is a Japanese dancer based in New York. He’s won first place at AMATEUR NIGHT at the Apollo Theater, and also appeared “So You Think You Can Dance.” and is currently performing with Broadway theater/bus tour “The Ride.” His DC performance is sponsored by Embassy of Japan in collaboration with Kurashiki City. Don’t miss his outfit sponsored by BLUE SAKURA.
Martial Arts
  • Aikido of Arlington
    Demonstration of a variety of techniques, from both taijitsu (no weapons) or budo, with tanto, joken. Will also demonstrate techniques to gain control in a situation where attacked.
  • Capital Area Jodokai

    Group practicing Shindo Muso Ryu in Alexandria, VA. Demonstration of self-defense techniques with a walking stick, sword, jutte (truncheon), and kusarigama (sickle and chain).

  • Capital Katori

    Tenshin Shoden Katori Shinto Ryu is a Japanese sword discipline used to develop awareness of oneself and one's opponent(s) in space. Come see how this awareness is demonstrated with the sword moving at changing velocities, escalating pressures, and shifting strategies.

  • Hobyokai / Hobyokan Classical Japanese Martial Arts

    Demonstration of classical swordsmanship and a variety of other weapons systems created by the Samurai during the 16th and 17th centuries.

  • JTR Jujitsu

    Our demonstration will include to include self-defense techniques, partner sparring and a weapons demonstration – highlighting both our children’s and adult programs of self- defense.-

  • Kenkonkai: Traditional Japanese Swordsmanship

    Come and appreciate a demonstration of Japanese sword kata and cutting from Nakamura Ryu Batto-o and Mugai Ryu Iaihyo-do. Proud to be a part of the Capital Area Budokai and Jodokai.

  • Kyudo – Japanese Ceremonial Archery

    Enjoy continuous demonstrations and discussions of this non-competitive, non-combative martial art that trains the student to calm the mind and balance the body.

  • Northern Virginia Isshinryu Karate Club / I shin ryu kara te do

    A comprehensive fitness and self-defense program. Its purpose is to provide qualified instruction in Karate, self-defense and the principles of traditional martial arts through training in Okinawan Isshinryu Karate.

  • Northern Virginia Kendokai

    Kendo is the Japanese form of fencing with roots in the sword arts of ancient Japan. It disciplines the human character through the application of the principles of the sword.

  • Traditional Karate Uechi Ryu

    Okinawa is “Birthplace of Karate. Futenma Shubukan is World Headquarters (Honbu Dojo) and Soke (family root) for Uechi-Ryu Karate-Do.

  • Yamajiro Dojo

    A traditional Japanese martial arts school blended with modern fighting systems. Styles taught are jujutsu, ninjutsu, karate, aikijutsu. Brazilian jiu-jitsu, and a plethora of different weapons.

Performing Arts
  • Anime USA Cosplay Fashion Show

    Anime USA brings many of the DC area’s top cosplayers to the J-POP Stage to show off their cosplays for you and teach about cosplay culture. Anime USA is an anime convention taking place in Washington DC’s in the fall.

  • CheeRing School Japan, and Capitol Movement Inc, DC.

    Come see the electric combination of CheeRing Japan and Capitol Movement DC. DC natives and Japanese children who have traveled here to perform combine for a can’t- miss performance!

  • Fox Mill Elementary Japanese Immersion Students

    Students from the Fox Mill Elementary School Japanese immersion program will perform a variety of traditional and modern songs.

  • Great Falls Elementary Japanese Immersion Students

    Students enrolled in the Great Falls Elementary School Japanese Immersion Program will perform several Japanese songs.

  • Japanese Culture Club at SUNY Geneseo

    We will be performing a traditional fisherman dance called ‘Nanchu Soran Bushi.’

  • JBE Band

    Our band members consist of employees at the Chamber of Commerce and at the Embassy of Japan.

  • Keisho Center Children’s Choir

    Washington Japanese Heritage Center (Keisho Center) will sing traditional and modern songs of Japan to celebrate the sharing of Japanese culture in Washington, DC.

  • KuroPOP

    An all-girl cover group from New York. Join them as they bridge the gap between cultures with music and dance!

  • Lotus Verry
    Lotus Verry is a New York-based Fusion rock/pop band formed in 2015. They were inspired by wide styles and generation of music such as Rock, Jazz, Country, Funk, Pops, Classical, Blues, Latin, and Electronica.
  • LUST

    High-spirited, raw-energy, modern Japanese-Rock trio!

  • Miyako Taiko from The Mark H Taiko School

    Miyako Taiko is a community taiko group affiliated with Mark H Taiko that performs their own dynamic version of contemporary American taiko.

  • NCSS 2019 Cherry Blossom Queens and Princesses

    Come meet the Japanese Cherry Blossom Queen, American Cherry Blossom Queen and the 2019 Cherry Blossom Princesses from the states, territories, and international embassies and enjoy their trivia contest!

  • Nen Daiko

    Enjoy the performance of a mix of traditional festival songs as well as more contemporary compositions that use taiko, fue (bamboo flute), and other narimono (percussion instruments).

  • New York Taiko Aiko Kai (NYTAK)

    We are one of the Taiko groups in residence as part of the TC Taiko Society at Teachers College, Columbia University and New York Suwa Taiko Association. We perform both traditional &contemporary style of taiko.

  • Okinawa Cultural Performance

    This group brings the essence of rich Okinawa/Ryukyu culture to the stage. Join our presentation and enjoy a collaboration of traditional court dance, music, eisa dance, and karate.

  • Okinawan Taiko Drummers of Wisconsin

    The Okinawan Taiko Drummers of Wisconsin, along with Chin Daiko, Anaguma Eisa, and Rockville Ryukyu Taiko of Maryland, perform drum- dances that originate in Okinawa, Japan.

  • Rie Tamuro

    Tamuro Rie is 25 years old singer-songwriter from Nara. She plays guitar and sings original songs.

  • Thomas Jefferson HS for Sci & Tech

    High school students will perform an artistic form of calligraphy on a giant piece of paper with dance and music

  • University of Maryland, College Park (UMCP) – Soran Bushi Squad

    University of Maryland’s Japanese American Student Association’s Soran Bushi squad has been active for over 7 years performing the dance multiple times each spring.

  • WJLS Fab Chorus Plus Koto

    Japanese Traditional Music

  • Yamada Ryubu Kenkyujo (Okinawan Dance and Music)

    Classical Okinawan Koto performance; members also play other instruments (sanshin, taiko) and dance Traditional Ryukyuan dance

  • Yosakoi Dance Project – 10tecomai

    10Tecomai’s styles of dance are known as “Yosakoi” which originated in the Kochi prefecture of Japan. Its positive, uplifting, high-energy movements are the defining qualities of Yosakoi dance.

  • Ai’s Sakura Band

    Ai Yamashita from Japan, a pianist, composer, and arranger is leading her special band “Ai’s Sakura Band.” They will perform Ai’s original compositions and arrangements related to Sakura and Japan.

  • Nihon-shuji school of calligraphy