Archive for March, 2012

Hello from Fort Wayne

Wednesday, March 21st, 2012

Maz and I are making our way out east on a TaikoProject tour. We facilitated the Bon Taiko Bonanza workshop in Las Vegas and Denver, spreading the “named phrases” and “battle” concepts and last night did a Many Sides introductory workshop for Fort Wayne Taiko. I love all this taiko choreography! After a few more TaikoProject events, we arrive on the east coast in about a week. We’ll be met by Shoji and Patrick and perform as On Ensemble at the Eastern Taiko Conference. Much fun!

Next Up: Eastern Taiko Conference

Saturday, March 17th, 2012

Maz, Shoji, and I will be teaching workshops and performing at the 2012 Eastern Taiko Conference, held at Wesleyan University, March 29-30. We’re teaching the a fun set of workshops!

The Beauty of the Basic Strike
Sukeroku style/Yodan Uchi
Slant Choreography Primer
Developing Kiai while Playing
Kata from the Ground Up: Stance Fundamentals for Beginners

Looking forward to seeing everyone on the east coast!

Good in Gardena battle videos

Friday, March 16th, 2012

Thanks again to all the participants! Now that the ball is rolling… looking forward to revising and refining the solos and battle concept!

Thank you to Kim and Ayano for this great, HD video!

Derek vs Louis – structure 10

Jason vs Mike – structure 405

Aki vs Andrew – structure 101

Mark vs Tomomi – structure 405

Gorilla vs Candice – structure 101

Kerry vs Dan – structure 134

Gorilla vs David – structure 134

Jason and David vs Maz and Kris – structure 405…

Battle ending

Good in Gardena concert audio recording

Tuesday, March 13th, 2012

Thanks to the work of Matt Gallizzi and the last-minute help of recording-engineer Mikael, we got a nice audio recording of the concert and were able to distribute free CDs not long after the show.

I don’t have quite all the tracks yet, but here’s what I have thus far.


(For those of you who took home a CD, sorry if the tracks were out of concert order… there was a little bug in our script. Here are the names of the tracks on your CDs. 1) Dagakki, 2) Tally Ho, 3) Re-recycled Beats, 4) Kagamijishi, 5) Fuji Ondo, 6) Hisashi, 7) Jack Bazaar)

Good in Gardena winds down

Tuesday, March 13th, 2012

I took our guest artists from Japan to the airport yesterday, returned the 15-passenger van, and started on the post-concert, where-did-I-put-that-thing?! reorganization efforts. I fell asleep for a few hours but can’t seem to relax quite yet, so here are some wrap-up thoughts on the events.

I have amazing friends and family. So many of our guest artists’ best experiences came from the work of others. My parents organized an amazing home-party featuring nagauta for us in Bear Valley. Hiro, Michiko, Audrey, and Maria teamed up with my parents (on their 45th wedding anniversary!) to prepare a healthy, local, organic lunch and dinner, for a total of more than 100 meals. Maz organized the whole concert setup and teardown with a host of energetic volunteers. Margaret managed the yard sale. Matt managed Burn Your Own. Mikael filled in last minute for audio recording. Jason, David, Aki, and Tomomi helped guide guests and lend support everywhere. Battle participants and concert collaborators pulled me through really challenging music and were loving and supportive the whole way.

I’m really embarrassed that I did such a poor job of introducing our wonderful guest artists during the concert. I used regular names for many of our performers from Japan, worried that I might botch their stage names on so little sleep. I also completely forgot to introduce our dancer, Nakamura Narumi (Hiromi Ashmore). Ug. I’m such a thoughtless dork. I’m so sorry Hiromi!

Katsuyukie Sensei and Katsujyuuro-san did everything in their power to help me survive the shamisen pieces and to cover for me when I made mistakes. My biggest regret is not being able to devote more of my energy to making sure they had everything they need to perform their best. I want to be a collaborator that truly features others, but Sensei and Katsujyuuro had to worry about helping me get through my parts. The incredible strength of their playing despite these distractions is a tribute to their musicianship. I’m inspired to continue practice and inch toward this ideal.

My apologies also to everyone that the concert started a bit late… it seems I’ve been running 20 minutes late for the last week.

These mistakes aside, I’m relieved the events went well and I appreciate all the positive feedback. It was a ridiculously ambitious series of events, and things could have easily fallen apart. Thanks to all those involved for being a part of this. I hope it was a positive experience for everyone.

Good in Gardena is today!

Sunday, March 11th, 2012

Yahoo! Today is the big day! The performers are all here, the new pieces are practiced, the battle prep is complete, fresh tofu is cooking, and lunch is under way!

Although the lunch is sold out, tickets will be available at the door for the 2pm concert. And the 1:15pm battle is outdoors and open to the public. Please come!

Daylight Savings Time is tomorrow!

Saturday, March 10th, 2012

Aaargh! So sorry I didn’t notice this sooner. Tomorrow, March 11, the day of all the Good in Gardena events… is the day we jump forward an hour for daylight savings. Sheesh… the best laid plans…

Please note the time change and let others know as well. See you tomorrow!

Advance-sale Good in Gardena concert tickets available through midnight

Saturday, March 10th, 2012

Ticket sales for the Good in Gardena concert tomorrow are available through midnight tonight (Saturday). If you’re planning on coming but haven’t yet purchased your tickets, please do so today. It will help me with the setup if you have your ticket in advance.

Thank you everyone and see you tomorrow!

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