Portland State of Mind: Taiko Boom
The Center for Japanese Studies Presents
A book talk by Dr. Shawn Bender, author of Taiko Boom: Japanese Drumming in Place and Motion
The presentation will be preceded by a Taiko (Japanese Drumming) Demonstration by PSU Taiko Ensemble.
Taiko and the Rhythms of Postwar Japan: While it seems that Japanese taiko drumming can be found virtually anywhere in the world these days, it was not until well into the postwar era in Japan that these drums even took the stage. What was it that compelled the first taiko drummers to transform taiko drums into instruments of stage performance? And what accounts for taiko’s popularity today? In this talk, Shawn Bender discusses the emergence and popularization of taiko drumming. He explores how taiko’s rise reflects shifts in the configuration of local communities in postwar Japan and examines as well distinctions of style and philosophy among contemporary practitioners.
Dr. Bender teaches in the department of East Asian studies at Dickinson College. He has been doing fieldwork with taiko drumming groups in Japan since the late 1990s. This scholarship is the basis of his most recent book entitled Taiko Boom: Japanese Drumming in Place and Motion (2012, UC Press). He has also conducted ethnographic research into the introduction of traditional musical instruments into public school music classes in Japan.
COST: Free and open to the public
Co-Sponsored by Portland JACL
CONTACT: Melinda Grover, email@example.com or 503-725-8577