Taiko can be a fun hobby, a time to bang on the
drums and make a loud noise. It can also be a profoundly life altering
experience, awakening you to new strengths within yourself and new
ways to connect with people. Each player affects the energy of the
group and audience. Let your effect be a positive one.
Cultivate the desire and discipline to continuously improve
technique and musical ability.
Taiko is at its most beautiful when players are in unison, playing
with musicality and proper technique. Strive for accuracy of rhythm.
Know that this accuracy is most satisfying when players are in proper
stance, using proper form, and free from ego.
Strive at all times for correct kata, or form; conditioning
and centering so that grace, power, group awareness and expression
Stance, sticking technique, breath, feeling your body, the bachi
and the taiko work together as an instrument... these are all elements
of proper kata. Play with ki, rather than muscle.
Learn the history and culture of taiko. Respect the dojo
as the place of a path. Respect your sensei, senpai, and kohai,
and strive to embody the concept of shoshin (beginner’s mind).
Set your will to embrace the spirit of the art form and your dojo.
To be a taiko player, you must know the history and culture of
the art form and how songs came to you. By knowing the traditions
of the art form, you discover its greatest potential impact on your
life path. Holding respect and openness will lead you to a deeper
connection with the art form and your fellow players, and will make
you a better player and performer.
Bring lots of good ki into the dojo. Make your attitude
one of patience, humility, willingness, and generosity.
Taiko involves the celebration and expression of a heartfelt love
of the art, the excitement of playing the drum, and sharing that
enthusiasm with the audience. Whatever you are feeling most strongly
in your spirit will be conveyed when you play, so strive to make
it respect and passion.
By following these principles, you will find taiko an ideal way
to express new strength and skill, celebrate human connection, continue
your personal growth, and have fun!