Hello, everyone! I’m Tomohiro Mitome from Kodo. As well a being a performing member, I’ve recently been named as a Kodo Skills Specialist.
I’m pleased to announce that the online course I led at Kodo Taiko School from January through March this year, O-daiko Masterclass, is going to be offered again during the same period in early 2024.
The course content is split into four phases.
In Phase 1, we work on the fundamentals of fuse-uchi (upright taiko playing).
In Phase 2, we apply those techniques to playing o-daiko (the big drum).
As we progress through Phases 3 and 4, we look at stance, using your body, learning to play set phrases, and bringing it all together as you work towards your own ideal form.
When it comes to taiko, there is a broad range of drumming methods and styles, aesthetics, and schools of thought. At Kodo Taiko School, I would like to share with you one of the ways of playing taiko that Kodo has developed over the years. I want to teach you what I know and hope to invigorate you. I’m also looking forward to learning throughout the course as we all talk and discuss taiko playing.
These online courses enable free-flowing communication, which makes them an opportunity for us all to grow and boost our skills together.
We know some people would like to take part, but they can’t because of the noise involved or their internet setup.
There’s no need to hesitate because you don’t have a drum at home, or somewhere to play one online. During the lessons, you can use a mat or cushion instead of a drum. Please feel free to get creative and make it work for you.
If you like, you’re also welcome to video yourself between lessons, playing the tasks I give you on a taiko drum. If you send me your video, I’ll give you some feedback and advice.
Some of my past class participants came to Sado Island this summer for Earth Celebration. We’d only be in touch online before, and I got to meet them in person at long last.
I also got to teach some of them in person, giving them private lessons playing an actual taiko. I was so happy to see the participants coming together at our festival and to see the progress they are making beyond the course.
To take the course, you do need to have some taiko playing experience already. But you don’t need to speak Japanese: We have an English interpreter for all our lessons.
I hope you’ll take this opportunity to join me and taiko players from around the world online to learn together and expand your own circle of taiko friends.
The next O-daiko Masterclass starts in January 2024. It’s an 8-class course.
On Saturday November 18, we’re going to have Online Information Sessions. We hope to see you there!