North American Taiko Conference -Regional 

NATC-R History

2020 - TCA in response to the pandemic, conducts a risk assessment and determines that NATC 2021 and NATC 2023 cannot happen. We pivot to digital conference and programs. 

2021 - TCA begins to realize that we can do a better job serving our various regions of taiko through our programming. 

2022 - TCA hires its second ED and works to create new strategic framework that:

2023 - Hilo, Hawai'i


June 30 -  July 2, 2023


Keaʻau High School

16-725 Keaau-Pahoa Road

Keaau, Hawaii 96749


Over 250 attendees

Safety Message from TCA Executive Director

Hello NATC-R Conference People! 

This is a personal reminder from TCA Executive Director, Kristina McGaha, about some safety and health protocols before we all spend time together.  

Hey Taiko Fam! I know that many of you are either on the islands or on the way there in the next few days.  I am so excited to see each and every one of you. I am a firm believer in "safety first" and just wanted to share some safety items you may find useful.  

 Hawaii's masking policy varies and is currently optional. NATC-R also does not have a strict masking enforcement policy, but we acknowledge that the comfort level with this can vary from person to person. We advise you to use your discretion on if/how much you choose to mask during the conference. Our amazing Obon hosts are providing masks at the registration table in the event you'd like to wear one and need it.  

 TCA also has been fielding some questions about feeling sick or having symptoms prior to travel, and what attendees should do. Since we are not medical professionals, we cannot recommend how you choose to travel to the conference (or not). We simply ask that you be mindful and considerate of others so that we all have a fun, safe, and healthy experience at NATC-R. If a medical reason does arise that prevents you from attending, please reach out to me personally so I can help resolve any concerns you may have.  My email is 

Be well, travel safe, and see you there! 

Kristina McGaha (she, her, hers) 

Conference Schedule

Friday, June 30 

12:00 pm – 7:00 pm – Marketplace Open 

12:00 pm – 4:00 pm – Registration 

1:00pm – 3:00pm – Great Grandfather’s Drum with Kay Fukumoto 

4:00pm – 5:00pm – Opening Session - Click here to view the recorded 2023 NATC-R Hilo Plenary Session

5:30pm – 7:00pm – TaikoGO! 

7:00pm – 9:00pm – Dinner 

Saturday, July 1 

8:00 am – 6:00 pm – Marketplace opens 

9:00 am – 10:00 am – Opening Session 

10:00 am – 12:00 pm – Workshops 

12:00 pm – 1:30 pm- Lunch 

1:30 pm – 3:30 pm – Workshops 

3:30 pm – 4:00 pm – Networking and Breaktime 

4:00 pm – 6:00 pm – Workshops 

6:00pm – 10:00pm – Dinner & Obon at Puna Hongwanji (shuttle service will be available from the conference site to Puna Hongwanji) 

 Sunday, July 2 

7:00 am – 8:00 am Warm-Ups 

8:00 am – 6:00 pm – Marketplace opens 

9:00 am – 12:00 pm – Intensive Workshops 

12:00 pm – 1:00 pm – Lunch 

1:00 pm – 4:00 pm – Intensive Workshops 

4:00 pm – 4:30 pm – Networking and Breaktime 

4:30 pm – 6:00 pm – Closing Performances 

*6:30pm – 9:00pm – OPTIONAL – Screening of Finding Her Beat at the Palace Theater.  Special screening of Finding Her Beat at the Palace Theater in Hilo right after the conference at 7:00pm (doors open at 6:30pm).  This event is ticketed by the venue and not directly part of NATC-R, but will feature a Q&A session with Chizuko Endo and Tiffany Tamaribuchi.  $15/person General Admission 

Optional Intensive Sessions

Lion Chant with Shoji Kameda 

Mata Ne with Fred Visaya 

Registration Information & Cancellation Policy

Registration Schedule 

Steps to Register 

Pricing Tiers 

Other Information 


Cancellation Policy 

Travel Information

Lodging (Conference Rates) 

Castle Resorts – Hilo Hawaiian Hotel, 71 Banyan Drive, Hilo, Hawaii 96720 

Limited Shuttle Service  

Meal Information 

Select meals (kau-kau) are included in the registration fee.  Meal selections and dietary restrictions are selected during registration.  Meal tickets will be provided and include: 

TAIKOGO! is a smaller version of the NATC Taiko Ten concert, which aims to provide performance opportunities for organizations in attendance of the North American Taiko Conference.   The theme for our first TAIKOGO! is “Heritage and Evolution,” one of the TCA’s Core Principles. The first NATC was held in Little Tokyo, Los Angeles in 1997 and the first Taiko Ten concert was held in Sacramento in 2003, which was the first time NATC was hosted outside of Los Angeles. As the North American Taiko Conference continues to evolve with the first regional gathering (NATC-R), we want to highlight the ways in which taiko continues to both evolve and hold memory in our communities. What legacies and histories are performed in your group’s music? What new stories and adaptations does your taiko-playing incorporate?   As a reminder, TaikoGO! is a free and public event.  We hope to see you there!

We are excited to announce the line-up for the inaugural TaikoGO! concert (individual performances linked below): 

In addition, the following performers will be featured on Saturday and Sunday: 

Click here to view the recorded TaikoGO! 2023 Concert Event