Oto No Wa-Circles
A native of Chicago Illinois, Curtis Patterson studied with modern koto great Tadao Sawai. He holds a master\'s license from the Sawai Koto Institute and is the first non-Japanese national to graduate from the NHK training program for young performers of traditional Japanese instruments. With more than 20 years of study in Japan, Patterson currently resides in Tokyo where he also teaches koto and shamisen. He has performed with a wide variety of artists including screen actress Matsuzaka Keiko and popular singer/songwriter Kei Ogura. He was part of the AUN drumming unit\'s 50 concert tour in 2002 and appeared on the main stage at the 2004 Rain Forest World Music Festival in Sarawak, Malaysia. A member of the Sawai Tadao Koto Ensemble, Soemon and the US based Koto Phase, Patterson was musical director for the 2005 documentary film \'Magnificent Obsession : Frank Lloyd Wright\'s Buildings and legacy in Japan.\' Aside from his teaching activities, and performances with various koto ensembles and other musicians, Curtis is most active performing with shakuhachi player Bruce Huebner. "Curt & Bruce" presented their original compositions and arrangements at over 50 venues in Japan in 2007, and January 2008 saw them in the Pacific Northwest for their North American debut tour. They were joined by singer Susan Osborn for their 2008 \'Sakura Zensen Tour\' in April and May, performing at nearly 20 venues around Japan. This August Curt & Bruce are in Washington State, recording with Susan. The fall \'Momiji Gari Tour\' is currently being planned and it looks as if performances will start in the north (Iwate) in mid October and continue moving southward to end on the southern island of Kyushu in Early December.