Rieko Kotoku Ivaska was born and raised in Tottori, Japan. Rieko joined Sacramento Taiko Dan in 1996, where she has been a performer for the last 10 years under the mentorship of Tiffany Tamaribuchi. In 2013, Rieko met Akira Katogi, General Corporation Wariki, a master of traditional Japanese performing arts including Kagura dance and Taiko. She was touched by his message, which had a profound and transcending effect on her soul. This led Rieko to embark on a spiritual journey in search of the philosophical importance of Japanese culture and the purpose of her performing arts. As a student of Mr. Katogi, she has studied Kagura dance and Taiko and is now an independent performer.
Sawako was born and raised in a Buddhist temple in the south part of Japan. The safety and sacred feeling she felt being in the temple throughout her life has become an important part of her expression when she perform. She has studied Gagaku (Japanese traditional music for Buddhist temples and Shinto shirines) and many different styles of dance all through her life. She has been performing as a dance artist and as a musician over 10 years in North California and Japan. Her dance journey led her to study sacred/ritualistic music and dances from all over the world. Last few years, she finds her roots in Japanese culture and brings traditional and contempolary Japanese performing arts into her dance art. She celebrates the art of life by blending diverse cultures in her original style of bellydance and beyond.