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Yamato Drum and Bugle Corps

Location Kyoto, Japan/Riverside, CA
Division Open Class
Founded 1995
Director Bobby Ohtsuki, Edward Martin, Kinuko Yamashita
Uniform Black, White, and Red

Yamato is an open class drum and bugle corps that competes in the Drum Corps International circuit. Yamato was founded in 1995 and fielded its first corps in 1997. It is based in both Kyoto-Osaka, Japan and Riverside, California. Yamato is Drum Corps International's only multi-national corps.


Yamato was originally founded in Kyoto, Japan in 1995 as a way for young Japanese performing artists to perform and gain a first hand experience of the drum and bugle corps activity in the United States. Yamato's first corps took the field in 1997 and completed its first North American tour with a mixture of both Japanese and American performers. In 1998 Yamato achieved finalist status in Drum Corps International Division II & III finals. This prompted Yamato to file for 501(c)(3) nonprofit status in California under the name "Yamato Youth Arts Organization."[1] In its comeback year in 2008, Yamato made finals in the open class division with their show entitled MYTHOS.


According to the Yamato website, Yamato's mission is,"To instill life skills in cultural awareness, dedication, teamwork and musicianship in young performing artists of Japan and the United States through various performing arts groups."[2]


According to the Yamato website, Yamato's vision is,"To give both American and Japanese musicians and performers a venue to express themselves in a group environment while traveling and performing in both North America and Japan. We see our organization not only as competitive, but educational as well. We believe members will gain an understanding and respect for each others' cultures as well as for themselves. Yamato continues to cater to young musicians and performers under the age of 22, from various regions in Japan and North America."[3]

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