Tag ‘Kodo Village’
CBS News “Taiko Drummers of Japan”
On Aug. 3, Kodo & Earth Celebration were featured on CBS News “Sunday Morning.”
Check it out!
July 22, 2014
Hello, everyone! Thank you very much for always reading our blogs.
We have just returned to Sado Island from our two-and-a-half month tour.
Today, we carried out maintenance on the small props. We did it with the great care as our way of telling the equipment, “You did a good job over the past couple of months and we are counting on you for the fall tour, too!”
We met a lot of people during this spring tour. We really appreciate everyone who came to see our performances. If you have not seen “Mystery” yet, please come to see it in September and October. We hope to see you at a theater somewhere!
Sep. – Oct. 2014 “Kodo One Earth Tour 2014: Mystery” Japan Tour
Earth Celebration 2014 Shiroyama Concert Rehearsals
These photos show scenes from the EC 2014 rehearsals at Kodo Village, held April 11-13.
Photos by Takashi Okamoto
Sublime Rhythmic Gymnastics as Entertainment
The “DADAN” tour members are leaving Sado and heading for Spain soon! At Kodo Village, they are busily working on their final pre-departure rehearsals.
This year’s “DADAN” has an all new cast and programme. The eleven-strong team will touch down in Europe soon. Five of the cast are junior members making their Kodo tour debut. The schedule includes performances at outdoor festivals in both Spain and France.
“DADAN” is constantly evolving and I will be in touch during the tour to share reports of its progress with you all!
On the 10th of every month, the dining room at Kodo Village turns into a workspace as we prepare to send out the latest Monthly Japanese Newsletter “Kodo” to Kodo no Kai (Japanese Friends of Kodo service) members. The 1st-year Kodo apprentices always do this task, and this year they are joined by the new “Community Development Course” trainees. The envelopes are prepared by Kodo staff members and the apprentices insert the newsletter and flyers, seal them, count them for each region, and carry them to the front door to be picked up for shipping.
This month, we have sent out these 3 items. On the front page of the newsletter, you can see Kenta Nakagome leading a workshop during a “School Workshop Performance.” There are two other pamphlets: the Earth Celebration 2014 Programme and information about the guests for this year’s Shiroyama Concerts.
Junior members Naoya, Shunichiro and Kengo are practising hard at Kodo Village, preparing for the Kodo “DADAN” performances in Spain and France this July. It will be their first overseas tour and their first big Kodo performance.
Currently two different casts of Kodo members are on tour in Japan, so most of Kodo’s taiko are also on the road and not many are left here for members remaining on Sado to use. So they have to practise with whatever drums & stands are available. Usually this piece is played on hirado-daiko set down on the floor, but today they are practising it up on o-daiko stands. The piece is really powerful like this, too!
You can feel that they don’t want to be beaten by their seniors nor admit self-defeat. I’m looking forward to seeing how much they grow during this rehearsal time while the other members are away.
On May 31, Mr. Arata Iura came to Kodo Village while he was holidaying on Sado Island.
He is an actor and model who has his own design brand “Elnest Creative Activity,” a man of many talents, and one of his hobbies is photography. So we showed him to our rehearsal hall and played Yatai-bayashi and O-daiko for him while he enthusiastically took photos of us drumming.
I said to him, “Since you’ve come all this way, would you like to play taiko?” and he had a go at playing both Yatai-bayashi and O-daiko!
Mr. Iura gave us a signed copy of his book, “Iura Arata no Bijutsu Tanken” (Arata Iura’s Fine Arts Exploration).
On May 15, the School Workshop Performance tour left Kodo Village.
Safe travels, everyone!
Apr. 30, 2014
The cherry blossoms have begun to fall and the days are getting warmer and warmer. On sunny days, the Kodo members come outside to do their shime-daiko tuning by the lawn in Kodo Village.
Yuta Sumiyoshi (left) pulls the rope and Tetsumi Hanaoka (right) hits the rope
Shime-daiko is a roped taiko with a distinct, high-pitched sound. When you pull the ropes, it stretches the skin of the drum heads on either side. We hit the ropes while they are being pulled, as tight as we can, to make the skin stretch further. By doing this, the sound of the drum becomes higher and higher. The tighter the skin is stretched, the higher the sound gets, so the tuners have to work hard to get a high sound out of the drum.
The domestic Kodo One Earth Tour 2014: Mystery is about to begin.
We’re looking forward to seeing everyone at the various theaters around Japan.
Earth Celebration 2014 Rehearsals
In April, Kodo welcomed this year’s Earth Celebration guest artists to Sado Island for rehearsals for the upcoming concerts in summer.
The rehearsals with “DAZZLE,” who bring a wonderful & unique world of their own, and superhuman “BLUE TOKYO” were the best, and kept us all astonished from beginning to end!
▲Rehearsals with DAZZLE
▲ Rehearsals with BLUE TOKYO
During our lunch break we played kemari (a Japanese ball game) and it was a great chance to get to know each other better. Our teamwork was spot on!
We hope you’re getting excited about our performances together this summer!
(Photos: Takashi Okamoto)