Aki Takahashi is a taiko, shamisen player and folk singer based in Toronto, Canada. She studied traditional folk music in Kyoto, and has given shamisen and vocal performances at numerous venues and events. Since 2003, Aki became a member and a co-artistic director of Nagata Shachu, Canada’s preeminent taiko group, and creates her own original compositions and has choreographed pieces to accompany her music. She is also the founder of the Japanese Folk Ensemble “ten ten,” and has performed with numerous artists from a variety of other cultural backgrounds and traditions.
In February 2020, Aki was part of the cast of “HERbeat: Taiko Women All-Stars,” the first concert produced and performed by all women taiko artists from all over the world.
Heidi Chan is a musician based in Toronto, and has been a member of Ten Ten since its inception. She is a former member of Nagata Shachu as a performer and composer, and has worked independently as a multi-instrumentalist, composer, and sound designer for theatre, dance, film, and cross-cultural music projects. While passionate about the rich history and wide range of performance practices of Japanese folk music, she is also fascinated by modern music technologies. When she is not playing bamboo flutes in Ten Ten, she can be found making weird electronic sounds with modular synthesizers.
Kiyoshi has been performing Japanese drums (taiko) for over 38 years. He was a member and later the leader of Toronto Suwa Daiko from 1982-1992. He trained as an apprentice with Kodo on Sado Island in 1993 before returning to Toronto and forming his professional taiko ensemble Nagata Shachu. Kiyoshi has taught a credit course in taiko at the University of Toronto’s Faculty of Music since 1998.
Kiyoshi is a proud member of Ten Ten in which he has been a member for 17 years.