“My First Tour with Kodo” by Masaya Koike
I am currently in Matsumoto, Nagano, on my first ever tour with Kodo. I am a member of the School Performance Tour cast and we are spending about 3 weeks in Matsumoto giving performances at a range of schools.
I actually wrote about Kodo’s School Workshop Performances in my essay when I applied to become a Kodo apprentice because I was so interested in this side to Kodo’s activities. I think it is a wonderful programme because it allows the audience to sit up close to Kodo and feel the power of Kodo and taiko firsthand. The audience even has a chance to play taiko during the performance.
I play taiko, bamboo flutes, and metal percussion instruments in the current programme. We perform everyday so it is rather challenging, but I am doing my best to keep up with the others.
At the moment, we are mainly visiting elementary schools. The children have a sparkle in their eyes and they enjoy our performances and talk to us a lot. I have noticed that their presence and energy gives me a real boost.
At one of the elementary schools, one of the kids said, “Taiko is so cool!” That really stuck with me. I feel like our message really got through to them.
I think the biggest challenge for me on this tour is to discover myself. I want to answer some questions about myself: what do I want to do, what kind of person do I want to be, and who am I really? I want to take a close look at myself and figure out these answers.
Matsumoto is such a great place and I am enjoying every day here. They have really delicious soba noodles here, too! This tour has now passed the halfway mark. Our cast is also performing “Kodo Interactive Performances” for the general public, so if you have the chance, please come along and see us!
I am doing my best despite the summer heat! I want to share the joy of taiko with everyone, all over the world!
School Workshop Performances
“Hello Kodo” Small Ensemble Performance
July 20 (Mon), 2015 Kashiwazaki City Performing Arts Center Art Forêt, Kashiwazaki, Niigata