• Chunichi Shimbun


One of the trumpets that was used to play the fanfare during the opening ceremony of the 1964 Tokyo Olympics and given to the Aichi Prefectural Police is being displayed in their headquarters in Naka Ward, Nagoya, ahead of the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.

“This is a valuable chance for us to show our history,” said a representative from the prefectural force.

Personnel from the Ground Self-Defense Force played the lively 35-second-long “Tokyo Olympics Fanfare” in front of a full audience at the National Stadium on Oct. 10, 1964.

The trumpet is named the Nikkan Fanfare Trumpet No. 4 and was made specially for the games by Nippon Gakki Co., Ltd. (which merged into Yamaha Corp.). It has the Olympic symbol carved into its bright, gold body.

According to Satoshi Maeda, a 58-year-old music aficionado who heads a preservation society for the top-grade trumpet, only 30 were made for the opening ceremony of the 1964 Tokyo Olympics.

After the ceremony, the trumpets were given to the bands of various police forces, fire departments and other organizations throughout Japan. The trumpet received by the Aichi Prefectural Police has the number 18 carved onto it, which is believed to be the manufacturing number.

According to newspaper articles covering the 1964 Games, the Aichi police band performed in the ceremony for equestrian events held in Karuizawa, Nagano Prefecture.

The Nikkan Fanfare Trumpet No. 4. was used to play the national anthems for participating countries and Japanese traditional songs between events and medals ceremonies, helping to liven up the activities.

Isao Wakiya, 74, who directs the Nagoya Women’s University Junior High School and High School marching band, played the trumpet when he was assigned to the Aichi Prefectural Police band in 1964.

He said he can still remember the clear sound produced by the No. 4 trumpet.

Since then, it has been kept in the barracks of the police band, and new members are taught of its significance.

“Being able to play for a big event like the Olympics is something that I’ll always be proud of. I hope they’ll play the 1964 Tokyo Olympics Fanfare in the upcoming Tokyo Olympics three years from now,” said Wakiya.

“I want to preserve the important history left by those who came before us,” added Kazuyuki Yoneda, the head of the Aichi police band.

The trumpet has been displayed along with the Olympic flag in the PR center on the first floor of the Aichi Prefectural Police headquarters since March.

To view the trumpet, reservations are required in advance. For inquiries contact the PR division at 052 (951)1611.

This section, appearing Tuesdays, features topics and issues from the Chubu region covered by the Chunichi Shimbun. The original article was published July 22.

In a time of both misinformation and too much information, quality journalism is more crucial than ever.
By subscribing, you can help us get the story right.