Washington Koto Society Symbol

Washington Toho Koto Society

In 2014, the Japan-America Society of Washington, DC presented President Kyoko Okamoto and the Koto Society with the Marshall Green Award. JASW established the Marshall Green Award in 2011 to recognize "an individual or group that has made a sustained and significant contribution to strengthening relations between the United States and Japan, and/or to increasing understanding between the American and Japanese people." The Citation for the award reads:

"For your significant and sustained contribution to strengthening the relationship between the United States and Japan for more than 40 years by bringing Americans and Japanese closer through hundreds of performances of traditional Japanese music. The Society pays special tribute to you for your active involvement in educational, cultural, and people-to-people understanding between our two countries."

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.

The Washington Toho Koto Society is a nonprofit group of koto players and friends, primarily in the Washington metropolitan area, 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.  Since 1973, under the sponsorship of the University of Maryland's Department of Music, the Society has presented an annual spring koto recital that is open to the public and free of charge.  Society activities are funded by membership dues and support by private, corporate and government donors.

Washington Toho Koto Society is an IRS 501 (c)(3) nonprofit organization.

For more information, please contact:

kotosociety@gmail.com or Kyoko Okamoto at 301.572.7088