Los Angeles, CA 90013
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The TAIKOPROJECT, founded in 2000, is an ensemble of America's premiere, emerging taiko drummers dedicated to preserving and disseminating American taiko drumming through educational activities and public performances. The ensemble's work balances the traditions and rich history of American taiko with a contemporary edge exploring new dimensions in taiko.
Press and Presenter Quotes
"TAIKOPROJECT is a terrific, youthful blend of tradition and emerging artistry. It is a hilarious and touching treatment of the artform of taiko and its deep importance to a distinctively American community...TAIKOPROJECT rings true."
-Michael Reed, ASU Public Events, Phoenix, Arizona
"TAIKOPROJECT's performances were a great success, leaving our audiences exuberant and ready for more. Our two packed houses were thrilled with TP's multi-genre approach and their unique American take on the Japanese art of taiko."
-Matt Krashan, Director, UW World Series, Seattle, Washington
"TAIKOPROJECT is one of the most exciting next generation ensembles playing today. They play with sheer pleasure and consummate skill, telling a story of taiko that is deeply personal and recognizably universal."
-Marty Wollesen, UCSD ArtPower!, La Jolla, California
"They perform with ample grace, strength, and precision. Their choreography is indeed spirited and tinged with enthusiasm, but Artistic Director Bryan Yamami has not neglected the intense focus and carefully-plotted symmetry that are hallmarks of taiko."
-San Diego Arts, San Diego, California
"...they blew the roof off with their energy and willingness to take taiko into the 21st century by experimenting with various media and settings. They take American taiko outside the box."
-International Examiner, Seattle, Washington
"Although the group has a certain youthful swagger, the players are respectful of the tradition without being obsequious. They back up their youthful bravado with a high level of technical ability, not relying on flash and effects to carry the day. Their brand of taiko is loud, fast and clean--the energy level set at maximum."
-The Bulletin, Vancouver, Canada
The TAIKOPROJECT was founded in 2000 in Los Angeles, California. The group was conceived by Bryan Yamami with the idea of bringing together the best young taiko players in North America to create an innovative theatrical production celebrating American taiko. That show, TAIKOPROJECT: (re)generation, seamlessly blends taiko with storytelling, music, hip hop choreography, multi-media, and dance.
TAIKOPROJECT: (re)generation made its world premiere tour Fall, 2003 - Spring, 2004 to Gammage Auditorium at Arizona State University Public Events, Meany Hall at the University of Washington World Series, the Japan America Theatre at the JACCC, the Mondavi Center at UC Davis, and the Kenneth Ford Theater at the College of the Siskiyous.
Following its first tour, the TAIKOPROJECT developed collaborations with a diverse group of artists, including klezmer clarinetist Leo Chelyapov, Vietnamese pop singer Bao Han, Chicano rock band Quetzal, internationally-acclaimed European DJ Tiesto, and Vancouver's Chibi Taiko.
In Spring, 2005, the TAIKOPROJECT performed in Mitsubishi Motors of North America's innovative National Ad Campaign "Taiko Drums," featuring women from the group in a breathtaking 60-second commercial spot that was one of the highest-rated commercials of 2005 when it aired.
The TAIKOPROJECT then performed for the most prestigious taiko concert in North America-- "Taiko Jam '05," as part of the 2005 North America Taiko Conference. The group was also invited to perform for the Hollywood Bowl's prestigious "Summer Sounds" program, working with the L.A. Philharmonic Education Division.
In Fall, 2005, the TAIKOPROJECT traveled to Japan for the first time to represent American taiko at the 4th Annual Tokyo International Taiko Contest. As one of 12 finalists out of over 60 groups, the TAIKOPROJECT was the first American taiko group to participate in the internationally-recognized event. The TAIKOPROJECT made history and took home the top prize, First Place, in the Adult Group category, becoming then, the first American taiko group to win the entire contest as well.
In Summer, 2006, the TAIKOPROJECT presented Rhythmic Relations 2006, a joint performance with Bombu Taiko, Kitsune Taiko, and UCLA Yukai Daiko to a sold-out house at the prestigious John Anson Ford Amphitheatre. They also traveled to Japan to perform at the acclaimed EXTASIA Festival in Ishikawa-ken, and performed at the Hollywood nightclub Bar Sinister.
In Fall, 2006, the TAIKOPROJECT was selected to be a part of two prestigious juried industry showcases at the Western Arts Alliance (WAA) and International Performing Arts for Youth (IPAY) Conferences. TAIKOPROJECT also performed for Opening Night of the Los Angeles Kings' 2006 hockey season at the Staples Center and for the half-time show for the Los Angeles Clippers. In October, 2006, Bryan and Maz performed as guest taiko artists with rapper Xzibit for a music concert special on the DirecTV program CD USA.
In Spring, 2007, the TAIKOPROJECT will tour "(re)generation" along the West Coast to the Scottsdale Center for the Arts, UC San Diego's Mandeville Auditorium, the Lewis Family Playhouse in Rancho Cucamonga, the Washington Center for the Arts, and the Edmonds Center for the Arts.
TAIKOPROJECT has been recognized with grant awards from the Durfee Foundation, the City of Los Angeles, Cultural Affairs Department, and has been involved in projects funded by the National Endowment for the Arts, the Los Angeles County Arts Commission, and the Western States Arts Foundation.
Phone: (213) 268-4011
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