Taiko Project All-Stars Come to WNMU

Taiko Project All-Stars Come to WNMU

Silver City, NM- The Fine Arts Theater was filled with the lively and energetic pounding sound of the taiko drums on Saturday, October 7. Taiko Project All-Stars focuses on traditional Japanese taiko sound with a modern twist. Originally from LA, Taiko Project formed in 2000 and from that date on they have received countless awards, such as the distinguished Tokyo International Taiko Contest and were also featured guests on Jimmy Kimmel Live, iHeartRadio Music Festival, and the list goes on and on. Though having Japanese roots, Taiko Project encourages diversity in their group in order to flourish and incorporate the multi-cultural and gender-balanced aspect of America.

The performance was vivid with beautiful colored bright lights, choreography, and of course a variety of instruments. The excitement on stage was shared by the crowd who would often clap and shout along with the talented musicians.

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Performers Masato Baba (left) and Blaine O’Brien (right)

Performer and Artistic Director Masato Baba shared a bit of background regarding the origins of taiko. Baba also added that the reason he continues to pursue this art is visiting small towns and being involved with the community, stating that,”Taiko originated during the 1960’s  in WW2, and it was a way for Japanese to show their culture”

Jen Baik, also a performer, shared her motivation for taiko. Baik said, “It’s fun to travel around and share our art.” This type of art is often performed by women and Baik takes pride on that, however she also believes it is a “calling for everybody” and that “art shouldn’t be separated.”

Taiko Project All Stars will continue their nation wide touring towards the end of the year to the beginning of 2018.