TaikoProject Brings Summer Beat to UCLA on June 27


TaikoProject (Photo by Rob Hammer)

TaikoProject (Photo by Rob Hammer)

High-energy taiko songs and me­lodic taiko fusion converge to create a bass-pounding drum spectacular when TaikoProject brings “Rhythmic Relations 2015” to UCLA’s Freud Playhouse on Saturday, June 27.

Since its founding in 2000, Taiko­Project has been dazzling audiences with its unique contemporary blend of taiko with music and choreogra­phy. “Rhythmic Relations 2015,” the group’s ninth annual taiko extrava­ganza, celebrates the release of their new CD, entitled “Our Many Sides.” Blending taiko with marimba, bam­boo flute, melodic tank drum, udu (clay pot drum), and voice, Taiko­Project is creating a new, innovative American taiko sound.

The first half of the concert will feature Bombu Taiko and Kitsune Taiko in an exuberant program that includes more than 50 taiko drum­mers. In the second half, TaikoProj­ect performs all of the songs featured on “Our Many Sides.”

TaikoProject Artistic Director Masato Baba spearheaded the pro­duction of the new CD and is con­sidered one of the next-generation leaders in the American taiko com­munity.

“It’s certain to be an unforgettable evening, exploring new creative ground in taiko that is rarely seen,” says Baba.

Winner of the top award at the fourth annual Tokyo International Taiko Contest, TaikoProject has performed around the world in such places as Hong Kong, Dubai, the U.K. and Mexico. TaikoProject has been featured in everything from commercials to television shows to awards shows, performing alongside such musical superstars as Stevie Wonder, Alicia Keys, Usher, John Legend and Justin Bieber.

Most recently, they were featured in rock band 30 Seconds to Mars’ music video “Up in the Air,” and in Sean Paul’s “Come on to Me” music video (with over 28 million views each) and were the recipients of major grants from the National Endowment for the Arts and the Japan Foundation.

There will be two shows, at 3 p.m. and 8 pm. Reserved seating is $25. Tickets are available at www.tickets.ucla.edu or (310) 825-2101.



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