On March 9th, 2012, I went to watch Makoto Taiko perform at the annual Art Night in the city of Pasadena. Makoto Taiko performed three songs, every hour from 6-10pm, and I watched their last two performances at 8:15pm and 9:15pm.
The pieces they performed were called: Shobayashi, Yattai Bayashi, and Revelation.
According to a Makoto Taiko member, “Shobayashi was composed by Imafuku Masaru from Ondekoza” and the song was first performed by the Shumei Taiko Ensemble (Makoto Taiko’s previous name).
Yattai Bayashi is another piece composed by a member of Ondekoza and is a well-known piece performed by Ondekoza and Kodo. Yattai Bayashi is based on a drumming style called Yattai, where the drummers sit on the ground and play the taiko drum while supporting the drum between their legs (as you will see in the photos below).
Revelation was composed by the current chief instructor: Nakamura Koji.
The chief instructor of Mokoto Taiko, Nakamura Koji, trained with members of Ondekoza before establishing the Shumei Taiko Ensemble; so it is not surprising that Makoto Taiko performs pieces written by Ondekoza members.
Overall, the performance and acoustics of the room were great! I heard many audience members praising the performance after it had ended and seemed very impressed. Taiko drumming is definitely something you must experience in person. Seeing Makoto Taiko has not disappointed me and I look forward to seeing more taiko performances in the near future!
If you are interested in more information about Makoto taiko, you can go to their website at: http://www.makototaiko.org/
I heard that Kishin Daiko from West Covina is performing at the annual Cherry Blossom Festival at the East San Gabriel Valley Japanese Community Center on March 31st. Here’s a link to their site: ESGVJCC’s Cherry Blossom Festival
I’ll definitely be there and will post more about taiko! =)
In the mean time, enjoy the coming of spring!