Kaoru Kakizakai began studying the shakuhachi with Katsuya Yokoyama following his graduation from Aoyama Gakuin University in 1982. He then graduated from the NHK Traditional Music Conservatory. He won the Grand Prize of the All Japan Hôgaku Competition. He participated in the first and second World Shakuhachi Festival held in Boulder, CO, (1994 and 1998) and first and second Australian Shakuhachi Festival. Kakizakai participated in many of Katsuya Yokoyama's CDs and videos. In 2000, he performed with the NHK Symphony Orchestra "November Steps" from the well-known Japanese composer Toru Takemitsu, a concerto for shakuhachi and biwa. Since 2000, he has been a lecturer at the Tokyo College of Music. He also regularly travels abroad.
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