Arts Brief: Soh Daiko set to perform
The thunderous sounds of Japanese taiko drums will reverberate around the Colby campus as the taiko troupe, Soh Daiko, performs this weekend.
Soh Daiko is a group of artists from a dojo in New York City, the first taiko dojo on the East Coast. Their music style is characteristically dramatic, incorporating acrobatics, complex choreography and other energetic visual elements.
Though the taiko drums themselves are the primary instruments, Soh Daiko has also been known to use bamboo flutes, brass bells, conch shells and gongs. Their music includes classic Shinto music, adaptations of classic taiko arrangements, and original pieces composed by the performers.
Soh Daiko has received positive reviews from the New York Times and has performed in high-profile venues such as Carnegie Hall, the American Museum of Natural History, the Metropolitan Museum, the Lincoln Center, and places as far as the United Kingdom and Japan. They have been featured on National Public Radio, Sesame Street, MTV, and the David Letterman Show.
Soh Daiko was founded in 1979 by members of the New York Buddhist Church as a youth activity after members of the Young Buddhist Association saw Chicago’s taiko troupe perform. Reverend Hozen Seki named the group Soh Daiko which means “peaceful, harmonious drums.” Over time Soh Daiko became an adult group.
Wynn Yamami, a former member of Soh Daiko and the Artist in Residence at Colby last semester who taught taiko drumming, initially contacted Soh Daiko to invite them to Colby.
When he left campus at the end of the semester Professor Tamae Prindle of the East Asian Studies department took over and made the necessary arrangements.
Soh Daiko will be performing in the Parker-Reed Room and Marchetti Room of the Schair-Swenson-Watson Alumni Center on Saturday, November 6.
“The group will be giving a workshop to the members of the taiko clubs in Colby, Bates and Hall-Dale High School,” Prindle said. “Also, there will be a very brief concert by these club members after Soh Daiko performs.” Soh Daiko will perform from 4:00 p.m. until 5:00 p.m. The performances are open to all members of the Colby community.