Jiro Horiuchi left his name as the first generation of the fireworks family business. The current chairman, Haruo Horiuchi, trained at Taiyodo Tamura Smoke Shop and Shinshu Smoke Industry in the same prefecture in 1959, and learned “safe fireworks making” and “good craftsmanship”. After returning to Ina, he was able to make fireworks that he was satisfied with, and won the first place in the Ise competition. In 2003, Masaru Nasuno took over as the fourth generation of the company. In the new fireworks collection held in Omagari, they sent spirited Hanabi Sakka such as Shibata and Kigasawa to show their individual abilities by winning the gold prize. He has also put young people in charge of famous fireworks displays across the country, nurturing young creators who will take on the company’s back. As a manager, Nasuno is in charge of the manufacturing plan for the factory, staffing the fireworks display, and calling the shots for Tsuneo.
The Ina Kiko Horiuchi smoke shop produces about 1,800 large rounds a year. Of those, about 40 large 24-inch rounds have been produced. About half of these will be displayed at the Kuwana Suigo Fireworks in Mie, Japan.
The management philosophy of the fireworks shop is “making safe and satisfying fireworks”. The manufacturing plan is carried out from the customer’s point of view. He says he would like to set off the fireworks that only the Horiuchi Fireworks Shop can produce without resting on the growth in business.
Shigeo Shinohara, the current owner of Shinohara fireworks, became interested in fireworks after meeting Tamon Aoki, who is nicknamed the god of fireworks, and seeing the fireworks he made. When Shigeo saw Aoki’s beautifully colored fireworks and the color scheme of the core, he thought, “The world of fireworks looks interesting too.
Shigeo learned how to make fireworks from Kazuo, a mild-mannered firework enthusiast, and Tamon Aoki, who he says is a firework master. He said that Aoki gave him tips when he got stuck many times.
Shinohara Shigeo now has two young disciples. It’s Naoya Fukuda and Junnosuke Iura. After studying in the U.S., Fukuda was fascinated by the allure of fireworks and decided to join Shinohara. After experiencing firework making in Niigata, Iura studied fireworks scientifically at the Ashikaga Institute of Technology. Later, he begged Shinohara to make him his apprentice because he wanted to master fireworks. Shigeo said, “Fireworks are unique only when they are 100% handmade. I want to raise young people who have a goal to make,” he said, coaching the two of them sternly. They had the Shinohara-ism in them by thoroughly hammering in fuselage making and star making, and both of them said, “Fireworks making, it’s great! He said in unison. Shinohara does not buy anything he can make himself, much less wholesale fireworks or imported balls. Shigeo said, “Efficiency is also important, but it’s normal for us to make things and say ‘what’s the point’. He is proud to have been making fireworks for more than 40 years, and he wants to continue making fireworks as a “lifelong firework maker. The more fireworks you make, the more you hit the wall. We will overcome this barrier and pursue an even more ideal form. This is Shigeo’s ideal of making fireworks, he says.
Shigeo says that making fireworks is “a hobby”. Let’s have some fun! Let’s play! I’m working on making fireworks,” he says to himself. He says he feels the greatest happiness when the work he put his heart and soul into turns out the way he wants it to. You could say that Shigeo is a dreamer and a romantic.
Mr. Akio Aoki, the current representative of the fireworks shop, is also the president of the Japan Fireworks Art Association and a leading figure in the world of fireworks. He also received the Prime Minister’s Award in Omagari and Tsuchiura. Aoki’s fireworks are well known for their work called “Yubae no Yasashi”. Aoki was so impressed by the palm trees he saw on his trip abroad that he wanted to make fireworks out of them. He also creates various shapes of fireworks mainly for local fireworks festivals. It’s a really interesting film, with mushrooms and characters from the local TV station.
Another noteworthy presence in the Aoki fireworks is Hideo Hirayama. When he was a company employee in Tokyo, he saw a fireworks display in Yamagata Prefecture on a trip and was so shocked that he began to visit other fireworks displays around the country. In addition to being obsessed with the appeal of the Music Star Mine performance, the combination of music and fireworks made me see the potential for a new business. Hirayama felt strongly that he wanted to do this production the way he wanted, but he was a complete amateur when it came to fireworks, so he took a job at Aoki’s fireworks shop to learn from the basics. Hirayama, a native of Fukuoka, has no connection to Nagano, but when he learned about Aoki Hanabi, a traditional fireworks shop that has a reputation both in Japan and abroad, he decided to bet on his dream without hesitation.
For Aoki, Hirayama’s joining the company must have been an opportunity to open up a new field. For fireworks fans, the musical star mine produced by Hirayama is also the center of attention. From the local fireworks display in Nagano, Japan, to Sapporo, Yamagata, Ibaraki, Shizuoka, and even Kumamoto, Kyushu, he travels all over Japan. It’s not easy to go to see fireworks all over the country because it’s a huge investment of time and money, but still, the fireworks at Hirayama show everything you see a form of fireworks you’ve never seen before.We, the fireworks enthusiasts, think, “I’m glad I came all the way to this fireworks display, so I’ll be able to see it here again next year. He is one of the people who can fuse Japanese fireworks technology with the world’s fireworks technology and open up a new world using not only fireworks but also special effects such as music, laser, flame and confetti. He is now a leading figure in the fireworks industry in Singapore and Saudi Arabia as a general fireworks director. You can’t take your eyes off the “Hirayama World”, the fireworks world that Hirayama creates.
The first Fujiwara Akira ran a souvenir shop in Zenkoji Monzenmachi, and at the same time, he was contracted to make fireworks and fireworks in the Ammori area, and was also active as a fireman. Later, in order to focus on the fireworks business, he founded Shinshu fireworks. Nobuo, the third generation and current owner of the company, encountered a manufacturing accident after joining the company. In 1989, Nobuo took over as president, with the motto “Recruit and nurture young people who love fireworks”. The management policy of Shinshu Pyrotechnics is “to make fireworks that please and move people”. Nobuo says, “You can’t make a good firework if you don’t see something good,” and encourages his employees to watch pictures, movies, musicals, paintings, and competitive fireworks. It’s because ideas often come from them. The company was now a collection of young employees, the ideal organization that Nobuo had envisioned. Shinshu Pyrotechnics has three main fireworks (Nagano Ebisu, Nagaragawa, and PL fireworks), which are shot up at 60 places a year as a pyrotechnist. Masaru Tanaka, who is currently in charge of computer ignition and program configuration, is the driving force behind the Shinshu pyrotechnics on a new stage. He was strong on digital devices and brought about a new fireworks change. With these young pyrotechnicians, we can imagine more interesting and exciting fireworks in the future.
Katakai Fireworks Industry was founded in 1980 by Yoshiharu Honda in the Katakai area famous for its fireworks. Yoshiharu, originally a local alderman, was told by the local Kurosaki smoke shop in Katagai that there was no male successor and that the plant had to be relocated within five years because of inadequate equipment due to stricter gunpowder handling regulations. After consulting with Yoshiharu, he decided to take over the overall production of fireworks, saying, “Katakai Hanabi, which has been around since Edo, cannot be discontinued.
Yoshiharu calls back her son, Masanori, who had been working for a company in Osaka, and entrusts him with the start-up of a new factory. Masanori learns how to make fireworks from the craftsmen at the Kurosaki Smoke Shop and earns the national certification required for a fireworks factory, transforming himself from a can-do businessman to a fireworks company manager.
President Masanori served as president of the Japan Smoke Association for eight years, beginning in 2003. During this period, the company strengthened its “safety management”. That’s why we’ve been doing the right thing at our own company and taking safety measures. He also served as the President of the Ojiya Chamber of Commerce and Industry for four years from 2012. Here, he says, he has reaffirmed that “the prosperity of a company lies in continuing to innovate. That’s why the company is committed to “constant reform” and “thorough safety.
President Masanori and his son, Kazunori, remain steadfast in their commitment to the company’s philosophy of “constant innovation. The spirit of Katakai Smoke Industry, which has been making great progress in less than 40 years since its establishment, is encapsulated in this philosophy.
The Prime Minister’s Award, the highest honor of the fireworks competition, has been given only to the Omagari and Tsuchiura competitions. An amazing company that has won the award more than 15 times in both of these competitions is Nomura Hanabi Kogyo. That’s why it’s called the strongest fireworks company in Japan. In 2005, he exhibited the first-ever six concentric circles of fireworks in Omagari, and from then on, the flowers of the Nomura era began to bloom. The following year, he appeared on NHK’s “Professional: The Way of Work” and in 2008, he appeared in a commercial for Kirin Beer. Many fireworks enthusiasts may have vividly documented the scene where the fireworks were set off in unison on the Oarai beach and Yoichi Nomura drank a pint of fresh beer. Yoichi Nomura has decided to resign from all of his positions as a permanent member of the Mito Chamber of Commerce and Industry and president of the Ibaraki Prefecture Explosives Safety Association until the spring of 2015 to focus on fireworks. He says that he will break away from the restraints and face the end of his life. I want to make another flower bloom without being arrogant and with humility,” he says enthusiastically. Nomura Fireworks is a fireworks company that was founded in 1875. The first representative, Mura Shige, was an eye doctor, businessman, swordsman, and pyrotechnician, and had many faces. At the time, his lifestyle was so interesting that it was even serialized in the Ibaraki Shimbun. Shinichi the second president also played the shakuhachi and sang. He was also a style person who painted Japanese paintings. It was said that “Nomura’s fireworks have a certain flavor”. As a soldier in World War II, Yasuhisa achieved a miraculous return to Manchuria and New Guinea, and in gratitude for this, he worked hard to create fireworks. It can be said that Yasuhisa was the one who realized the foundation of Nomura Fireworks. Yoichi, the fourth generation, was appointed president in 1989. Yoichi says that the basics of all fireworks were taught to him by his father, Yasuhisa. Yoichi said, “Don’t try to imitate people. Stick to your point! He is proud of his motto, “Fireworks are the Nomura way”. Since the first generation, the Nomura family has followed the Nomura style, not going anywhere for training. He is now the most awarded pyrotechnician in the fireworks industry with the Prime Minister’s Award, the highest title in Japan. Yoichi Nomura says, “No fireworks are perfect. And, he said, “It’s always a cycle of improvement. When we are unconvinced about fireworks, we thoroughly pursue the cause and improve it. They are highly idealistic, yet highly problem-conscious. In addition, I am afraid that they are not satisfied. The Nomura-ism is enshrined in the company’s employees. There are two young pyrotechnicians at the helm of today’s Nomura Hanabi Kogyo: the factory manager, Yuichi Nihori, and the former factory manager, Shinobu Yamaguchi, both of whom Yoichi fully trusts as pyrotechnicians, ideas and directors. Yoichi said, “Individuality and sensitivity are important in making fireworks. The two have been working together since their twenties to create tasteful works of art. They’re now in their 40s at their most working and able to express their adult world,” he squinted. The two of them formed a team to decide on the work. Yoichi said, “In this day and age, what a pyrotechnician needs is total artistic ability. You can’t just make fireworks. Even if it’s just planning and ideas, you can’t do it. We are developing such all-round players who can produce computers, make plans, and make fireworks. That’s why we don’t have a division of labor system, but rather let one person create everything according to his or her image. A work of art can be done better if it is done alone. This is a very typical Nomura way of thinking. According to Nomura, “Management must create an environment in which employees can work hard on their own initiative. The company’s philosophy is to create an environment where employees can work comfortably and come up with plans because the work gives the audience dreams and excitement. In the course of creating a work of art, employees would ask for capital investment in this way, or to make their own small flammable tubes, or to establish a new workshop to improve the manufacturing process. It’s a good thing if it’s cost effective and the result is that Nomura Fireworks is appreciated. Naturally, we will work together with our employees to improve our management, giving priority to cost-effectiveness while making improvements. Yoichi’s management philosophy of developing employees’ autonomy and individuality is “a company that only exists because of its employees.