Our Team

Board of Directors

Our board is run by volunteer directors who love to practice Okinawan music and dance and explore new possibilities. We are grateful for the opportunities that we are given to demonstrate dynamics of Okinawan culture to you.

14092092462312 copy.jpg

MARINA WATABE

President

When Marina was 7 years old, she saw a TV show that featured Okinawa and fell in love with the scenery. Shortly after, her parents decided to move from Chiba where she was born to Miyako Island(or Miyakojima). It was meant to be a short term stay to ease her symptoms caused by Chemical Sensitivity, but the family settled and lived there for 15 years. She moved to Canada in 2012, and she has enjoyed multicultural atmosphere in Vancouver ever since. She loves to play the Sanshin, cook Asian foods and write stories.  

IMG_5534.jpeg

MASAMI HANASHIRO

Vice President

Masami was born and raised in Miyakojima, Okinawa, Japan. She studied at Shinsyu University and University of British Columbia. She is the World Eisa Ambassador and the founder of Vancouver Okinawa Taiko. She has strong passion for Okinawan music and dance, and has organized a number of events by Okinawan performers here in Vancouver in the last two decades.   

14092092325257 - Copy.jpg

ERIKA WATABE

Secretary

Erika is Marina's sister, and she also grew up in Miyakojima, Okinawa and then moved to Vancouver in 2012. Her favourite things to do include baking, travelling, and scuba diving. She enjoys playing the Sanshin, and she has started learning Okinawan folkdance recently.