Performers manipulated dozens of cables to make the 10-metre tall puppet, dubbed "MOCCO", walk and gesticulate across the stage.
According to Tokyo 2020, MOCCO symbolises "the strength, resilience, and kindness" of people affected by the disaster, and its design was based on illustrations by children from the disaster-hit areas. It has already been put on display at cultural festivals across Japan.
The performance was held at a park in central Tokyo and was attended by Tokyo 2020 president Seiko Hashimoto.
The massive earthquake and tsunami that hit northeastern Japan left more than 20,000 people dead or missing, and triggered triple nuclear meltdowns.
The Japanese government has turned the recovery of areas devastated by the earthquake into a symbol of national revival ahead of the Tokyo Olympic Games.