Had a great time at the East Coast Taiko Conference! A huge thank you goes out to Sophia Wang and Sarah Gilbert and the entire Taiko Tidesteam for all of their work in organizing this great event! Also a huge shout out to Soh Daiko and all my fellow workshop leaders! It's always fun to see everyone and share the stage together!
About a year ago Sarah called me and pitched the idea of creating a song that participants could learn online before the conference and that would embody the theme of Unity Through Diversity. Of course I said yes and started working on the idea. Fast forward a few months and I was in Spain working with Isabel Romeo Biedma and Andrés E. González when I came upon the theme of the song and the idea I wanted to convey. The piece is called Worldwide Matsuri and it's dedicated to this amazing and wonderful growing taiko community. More and more I'm seeing what kind of impact taiko has on so many people around the world. Every time we pick up bachi we are connected to all these crazy beautiful people and if we can all contribute our voice we can create a Worldwide Matsuri!
Creating this piece has also really helped me clarify what kaDON can be beyond just a great place to access quality instruction, repertoire and instruments. I'm inspired to use technology and social media to create real substantial connections between this amazing community. I want every person in the taiko taiko community to have the opportunity to play with taiko players they never thought they would be connected to. I want the act of playing taiko and making music and making art together to be a central part of what makes us a community and I'm excited about what I can do to help make all of this happen!
At the closing ceremony at the ECTC we had 35 taiko players who had never performed together share the stage to debut Worldwide Matsuri! It's so rewarding to see an idea come together and see the smiles and joy that performing together gives us.
After an amazing ECTC experience I was presented atThree Rivers community college where I gave a lecture demonstration on my experience in this art form. A huge thank you goes out to Will O'Hare for setting up this great opportunity!
I'm sitting at JFK waiting to board a plane to Hamburg where I'll be attending the European Taiko Conference this weekend! Looking forward to seeing more crazy taiko people, more late night hangs and more great performances and workshops!