Dress Rehearsal

We just returned from our dress rehearsal for tomorrow's concert. I think everything went well enough and I feel ready for tomorrow's performance. I had one little thing go wrong for me today, though. I was playing a different drum than what I am used to and it turns out that the head is much tighter than my usual drum. When I hit the first couple notes, the rebound was so strong that my stick flew out of my hand. Although embarassing and I had to walk part way across the stage to pick it up, I recovered well and finished the song without any more mistakes. No one even mentioned it.

It was interesting to watch all the groups go through their rehearsal as well. One thing I noticed is that the instructors gave very few criticisms, if any. They only said things like "Play a little louder tomorrow." "Let's have even more energy tomorrow!" "Use more voice tomorrow." No individuals were pointed out or picked. No particular sections of the music were critized either. I know everything was not perfrect, but still, only very general comments were given. Even the practices the last couple weeks have been fairly relaxed, and non-critical. In my opinion, I think the instructors are thinking that at this point, it is too late to be making big changes. It will only put pressure on people and make them even more nervous. I think that their hope is that we will all relax and enjoy playing, and if we can do that, our best performance will come out by itself. I agree with this 100%. If the performers are enjoying themselves, the audience will too.

Lastly, I got two big encouragments as I was getting ready to leave. Our bags and coats were close to where Jige-san (of Hono Taiko) and Asano-san (the owner of Asano Taiko) were sitting. Both of them told me they thought I was doing a good job. I know not to put too much worth on this, but still, Jige-san is one of my original taiko inspirations and Asano-san, the owner of the company that makes the best taiko in the world, well, he's seen so many different taiko groups at so many levels, it's just an honor that he would give me encouragement. I was pleased.

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