About Katsuji

Originally from Mie, Japan, Katsuji Kondo joined Ondekoza on Sado Island right out of high school to study taiko and Tsugaru shamisen. In 1982, he became one of the founding members and key performers of the renowned Kodo, and in 1987 became the director of the Kodo Apprentice Centre following an injury to shift his focus from performing to teaching. During that time, Katsuji also participated as taiko instructor and performer in the world premiere of “Kaguyahime – The Moon Princess” by the Dutch contemporary dance company Nederlands Dans Theater. The production toured in France (Paris Opera), Germany, Netherlands and Japan and received great reviews.

In 1993 he left Kodo to pursue a career as a solo artist and teacher. He has been holding “Taiko Juku” camp in Nagano and has since established the “Kondo Katsuji Taiko Method” with the focus on “creating an expressive body” through not only the techniques of playing taiko but also on stretching one’s body.

Katsuji is currently one of the most sought-after taiko instructors in Europe and Japan, and serves as a key instructor at Hibikus Yokohama, a Miyamoto Unosuke Shoten taiko school in Japan.