TAIKO~Rhythm in Motion (English version)

 TAIKO~Rhythm in Motion~(TAIKO RM), the percussion workshop and stage performance event held in Akita, Japan, in April 2019, has led to what kind of activities since then? I interviewed Mr. Muto, the representative of Sesnsational ZIP. I asked him about the event and what he has done since then. (Interviewer: Emiko Nakanishi)

●Background of the event

In Omagari, Daisen City, Akita Prefecture, we have been trying out various events in the community with people who are connected through marching band activities. TAIKO RM and Premium Exchange Party - Akita Marching & Baton Show, at first glance, seem to be two separate events, but S.Zip was also involved in the event and collaborated with teachers in the same area to organize it.

It was difficult to get people to pay attention to an unprecedented event, and although the number of people who attended the workshop was large, we were not able to attract enough people for the stage show. However, the bonds we formed with the new percussion players we met there were a big driving force for us to organize the 2020 online social event (Sirius Music Party!).

 ●Under the circumstances of COVID 19

COVID 19 infection spread in 2020. It was difficult for us to do the same activities as before. However, we were able to make use of our experience at TAIKO RM, as we had been looking for ways to enjoy activities that fit our situation. We were able to expand our thinking to try various things.

Through TAIKO RM, I have tried many new things such as live drumming to background music, international exchange - I was able to have a relationship with Mr. Kasem who is active in Thailand, and a drum line under the guidance of Mr. Okubo. With this as a hint, we were able to transition naturally to the new normal. 

●Opportunities for professionals and amateurs to play together

As it was an "non-competitive event", the members were able to enjoy the musical performance with professional performers. We were able to experience something that we could not have done on our own, and the members enjoyed percussion even more.

Many performers from outside our area participated in TAIKO RM. A good atmosphere has been created in which people can experience the joy of performing together and further pass it on to others. People who participated from various groups across the region are now working as leaders in their own groups, and online we can practice together regardless of distance. The need to use the online system, necessitated by the Corona disaster, has led to the creation of new practice sessions, taking advantage of the human connections that already existed.

I am frankly happy that a new generation of leaders is being born in each group. I also feel with the members that new possibilities are sprouting and that we can learn from each other through marching, and we are moving forward with our activities.