DURANGO, Colo. – TAO, the veritable “rock stars” of Taiko, traditional Japanese drumming, is set to stage a new production, “The Art of the Drum” at the Community Concert Hall at Fort Lewis College, Monday, Feb. 20, 2012, 7 p.m. Powerful, dynamic and unique, TAO is said to bring “Cool Japan” to the world.
In TAO’s “The Art of the Drum,” specifically designed for the Spring 2012 North American tour, athletic bodies and contemporary costumes combine with explosive Taiko drumming and innovative choreography for a show that has critics applauding TAO’s extraordinary precision, energy, and stamina.
As noted in the Chicago Tribune, TAO is “extraordinarily talented…incomparable muscular zeal.”
Taiko drumming originated as a spiritual ritual to evoke rain or a good harvest. Today the culture is kept alive by TAO. Formed in Aichi, Japan, in 1993 by former marketing manager Ikuo Fujitaka, TAO moved its base to the Aso-Juju National Park in the mountains of Japan in 1995. There the stars of TAO live and train at a specially-designed compound, achieving the highest level of virtuosity only after years of intensive study. The daily regime includes a pre-dawn walk, running, martial arts, drumming and dance.
The performers each bring their nontraditional flair to the group by drawing on their diverse backgrounds. For example, one is a hard rock musician, another a gymnast, and another a composer. The troupe offers a young and vibrantly modern take on Taiko.
When TAO decided to first lay its roots in the southern Kyushu region, it focused exclusively on performances there until the troupe had achieved 1 million in ticket sales. This milestone was to confirm TAO as “world class entertainment.” TAO achieved its original goal of 1 million tickets in less than eight years. Then the performers presented their show to the world.
Today, with hundreds of sold-out shows and more than 5 million spectators in 17 countries, TAO has proven that modern entertainment based on the traditional art of Japanese drumming has massive international appeal.
Visit http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mlG5asr3D7Y&feature=related to view TAO live in 2011.
Tickets for TAO: The Art of the Drum – $25/$30/$40 – are available on-line at www.durangoconcerts.com or by calling 970.247.7657, or at the Ticket Office in Downtown Durango at 7th St. and Main Ave. All sales final.
Showtime is 7 p.m., with doors to the Concert Hall and concessions, serving beer, wine and non-alcoholic beverages and snacks, opening at 6 p.m.
The Community Concert Hall is a not-for-profit, multi-use performance venue located on the campus of Fort Lewis College. Its ability to bring a diverse spectrum of shows to Southwest Colorado is made possible through a partnership with the college, a state-supported, independent institution of higher education, as well as through financial and in-kind contributions from generous members of the community.