A Christmas with Shoji TabuchiSaturday, December 15, 2012 - 7:30pm
Tommy & Kathy Gunn
Celebrate the music of the season as well as Shoji favorites, melding the music of Broadway, movies, classical, country, pop, rock and western into a fabric of musical perfection. For two decades, Shoji Tabuchi has presented the hottest must-see show in Branson, Missouri, a top-five North American vacation destination. You must see and hear Shoji Tabuchi to believe him!
Shoji Tabuchi was born in Japan where his mother insisted on violin lessons and enrolled him as a Suzuki student at age seven. He received a degree in economics from St. Andrews, a private school in Osaka. It was expected that Shoji follow his father into the corporate world. But during his sophomore year at St. Andrews, Roy Acuff, longtime member of the Grand Ole Opry, performed a concert on campus. Shoji was captivated by the music. When Shoji talked to Acuff after the concert expressing his enthusiasm, Acuff replied, "If you ever come to the United States, look me up."
Shoji's love of American country music continued to grow. While his father was away, Shoji convinced his mother to support his dream of becoming an entertainer. With a small amount of money, Shoji set out for the United States. After taking odd jobs in San Francisco to make ends meet, he settled in the Midwest with his first steady job, playing fiddle in a country band at the Starlite Club in Riverside, MO.
In 1968, Shoji again met Roy Acuff who again invited him to "come to Nashville when you get a chance, I'll put you on the Opry." Shoji wasted no time, drove to Nashville, and appeared that Friday night at the ole Ryman Auditorium. There he fiddled his way into the hearts of country music fans that gave him two standing ovations. Ultimately, Shoji played the Opry 27 times.
In the years to follow, Shoji has toured throughout the country, performed with numerous country stars, and headlined on the Branson scene. Today, he owns his own show in his own 2,000-seat state-of-the-art theater, The Shoji Tabuchi Theatre. He has recorded nine albums and five videos, earned numerous awards, made many TV appearances and played for both President George H.W. Bush and President George W. Bush.
Shoji's inspirational story is the "stuff" that dreams are made of. With just $500 in his pocket he came to the United States to fulfill his desire to play country music. From the early days in San Francisco when he had to work hard just to eat, he has been able to make his dreams come true here in America. Shoji's parents visited him many times and became ardent fans and supporters of his American dream.