Just some news

I just got back from Yume Mitai practice. It was our first practice of the year, and Yamada sensei ran things pretty efficiently today. She is trying to get us focused on the recital coming up in March. It is actually a bigger deal than usual because it will be almost like a trial to see if we have what it takes to perform at a major (?) concert event coming up in May. At the beginning of December she told us about the possibility. Apparently there will be a taiko concert during the first week of May, Golden Week holidays in Japan. This is important, because it means people will not have to work and more people are likely to attend the concert. Also, there are some major names on the concert roster, like the Miyake Jima hozonkai leaders, I believe it is a father and two sons who founded the hozonkai. There will also be former members of Kodo playing, and probably Hono Taiko will perform also. I think the concert is partly sponsored by Asano Taiko. Apparently, the people in charge at Asano said if Yume Mitai performs well at the March recital, they will invite us to also play at the May concert. So it is exciting to work hard for the possibility of playing again with world renowned taiko performers.

I learned another fun piece of info at today's practice. When I got to practice today, there was a camera man there also. Apparently, Asano Taiko is making a new promo video for Hono Taiko, and they wanted some footage of Yamada sensei (a member of Hono Taiko) teaching some of the other groups she works with. So, I guess there is a chance that I might be seen for a brief moment in Hono Taiko's promo video. I'll have to be sure to ask for a copy.

And finally, yesterday, we got back late in the evening, from attending Yamato's concert in Nara. It was about a 3 - 4 hour drive from here. I hope to write in more detail about the concert later, but for now I'll just say that I was moved from the first note of the concert to the last. As soon as they hit the first notes on the drum, a chill went through my body. In the past I've often said that Yamato was one of the best taiko groups in the world. I've seen Yamato perform live 5 times now, and I have also seen other world class taiko groups (such as Kodo) perform several times. After last night, I feel that Yamato is not one of the best, but the best taiko group in the world. If they come to your town, please make every effort to see them. Starting next week they kick off a 3 week or so stint in Paris.

Well, I keep trying to make "short" entries, but they always turn out much longer than I intended.

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