This week we are rehearsing the basics, all week!
*July 2014 Kodo “Dadan” Performances
This production gains power with each performance season. This non-stop, full-power drumming spectacle will tour in Europe this summer and performances are being planned in Spain and in Lyon, France. Details will be announced on the Kodo website when available.
Today it is cold and snowing on Sado Island… and we had a run-through rehearsal of “Dadan” at Kodo Village.
We are beating the drums with all our might with the new junior members.
“Kodo One Earth Tour 2014: Legend” O-daiko Ura-uchi
In the second act of the performance, there are three O-daiko soloists who perform one after the other, and the third one is Yosuke Oda.
Wild, free, like he is beating the drum instinctively: he plays that kind of “O-daiko.” On this tour, I am playing the back of the drum, which is the bass rhythm part called “ura-uchi.”*
There is something great about standing on either side of the odaiko, the atmosphere and the air of tension. At first, the harder I tried, the more I’d lose the plot, or collide, or get ahead of where I was meant to be, and I couldn’t get my energy to accompany Yosuke’s energy properly. It was frustrating and it troubled me for ages.
n Milan, I was rehearsing with Yosuke before the performance and he said, “Relax, and be calm.” So I made a clean break and tried to play really calmly.
And when I did that, Yosuke said “Yes, that’s the way! When you play calmly, you could see all kinds of things, right? You need to face me with the exact opposite to my energy. Then our energy will meet in just the right spot.”
I felt like new things had popped up in my senses for sure. “So that’s what he meant!,” I thought to myself. I learned how good it feels when the two of us are in sync.
Playing the back of the odaiko teaches you a lot.
I’ll do my best behind the big drum again today!
*”Ura-uchi” is the person who plays the bass rhythm on the back of the odaiko (big drum), with their body and soul in unity with the soloist on the front of the drum.
Our five performances at Theatre du Chatelet in Paris, France have successfully come to an end and many people came to see us.
Here’s a photo of the Theatre.
Yesterday it was our technical director Martin’s birthday! We celebrated his special day with a cake filled with something he loves: strawberries.
This is the debut solo album by Motofumi Yamaguchi, Kodo’s principal flautist. Recorded at Kodo Village using makobue flutes made from local Sado madake bamboo, this “home-grown” album has a deep, rich sound. This is a collection of original songs and beautiful arrangements of folk favorites from around the world.
You can listen to album tracks “Gaftai Baile Bui(Irish Folk Song)” and “Yamauta” on YouTube.
For orders, please visit the Kodo Online Store:
This album is also available on iTunes.
Jan. 26, 2014
Spring, summer, fall and winter… the seeds I brought from Sado Island from the four seasons have bloomed in the taiko playing of each participant.
For the workshops at Taiko no Sato Kyowakan, we had introductory sessions and step-up sessions so everyone could take the time to master “Hana Hachijo.” The goal was “to elegantly play taiko in a kimono.”
We had the final day of the year’s workshops today. Women in their kimono faced the taiko with pure courage, and I was in “full bloom” with joy like a bouquet of colorful flowers.
Takahito Nishino joined me as an assistant for the workshops.
Instead of certificates, I made sashes and gave them to the
graduates, which they can use to tuck back the sleeves of their kimono.
All of them told me that they want to continue with this taiko style, and I am all for it! “Hana Hachijo” means “Flower Hachijo,” so let’s make lots of Hachijo flowers bloom together!
After successfully completing our performances in Italy, the “Kodo One Earth Tour 2014: Legend” cast and staff have been at Theatre du Chatelet in Paris since Feb. 7 giving back-to-back performances.
▼Loading in to Theatre du Chatelet.
▼Yosuke Oda and Jun Jidai give an O-daiko demonstration.
This is also captured for tv and radio.
▼The curtain call after the first performance in Paris!
The audience got very excited and we received a standing ovation,
which is rare in Paris nowadays.
“Kodo One Earth Tour 2014: Legend”
Feb. 1 Performance in Milan, Italy
The passionate audience gave us a standing ovation during the curtain call.
Local taiko groups held up message cards for us during the curtain call to cheer us on.
Thank you very much to everyone who came along.
“Kodo One Earth Tour 2014: Legend”
On January 29, the tour had its opening night in Rome, Italy.
Jan. 30, 2014
Today, we have wonderful weather, which is rarely seen on Sado at this time of year. How beautiful the morning sea is! I saw a stairway to heaven.
The sky over Kodo Village is so blue! This is very unusual!
I wish it was warm like today everyday, but it is still in January. I don’t think I can be that optimistic.
I convinced myself this year that winter is meant to be cold, so I should warm myself up! So, I run when it’s chilly, play “Yatai-bayashi” when it’s freezing and battle on against the winter weather. Now, I really miss springtime. I think it’s important to look forward to the next season coming, especially in such modern times.
Many of us are pleased with this mild winter, but the only person who is sulking and saying ” I want to play in the snow!” like a kid is .. this guy in dressed in yellow.