It is a pleasure and honor to be named an ambassador of the World Forum on Sport and Culture.
Thanks to the support of countless people, I have celebrated the 55th anniversary of my debut as an enka singer. My deepest gratitude goes to my fans and peers who gave me the gift of kindness throughout the years.
In the course of my long career, I have not only performed across Japan, but also had the opportunity to deliver enka — the soul music of Japan — to audiences in various countries, including the U.S., China, Russia and Brazil. Through these tours abroad, I have learned firsthand that what they say is true: Music can transcend nationality and culture and serve as a means of cultural exchange between different peoples.
As a sports lover, I look forward to 2020, when the world’s eyes will focus on the various international sporting events taking place in Japan. I cannot wait to witness the even greater success of Japanese athletes and to see peoples of different countries making heart to heart connections through the carnival of sports.
In my role as an ambassador, I hope to draw on my experiences as both a singer and a Japanese national to offer the best support I can and present the wonderful culture and heart of Japan to guests from abroad.
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