Fubuki Daiko to perform in Bowker Auditorium

“Fubuki Daiko: Japanese Drumming and Dance” will perform on Thursday, March 10 at 8 p.m. in Bowker Auditorium.

Literally translated as “blizzard drums,” Fubuki Daiko fuses ancient and modern elements of Japanese drumming. The group’s playing has been described as “a violent attack on the drum heads with the energy and ferocity of martial arts warriors.” Its four members move among the various-sized drums, from the shime and small taiko tightened with a rope to the larger wadaiko, miya daiko, nagadou daiko and jozuke.

Hiroshi Koshiyama, founder of the Winnipeg-based group, trained with Grant Master Seiichi Tanaka, who is credited with bringing modern taiko drumming to North America over 30 years ago. Koshiyama and his fellow kumidaiko players were all apprentices at Tanaka’s San Francisco Taiko Dojo. Performing, training and teaching year-round, each member has over 10 years of taiko experience.

The origins of taiko (or daiko), which means “big drum,” are unknown, but it was once an integral part of Japanese life, used in religious ceremonies, festivals, imperial court music, Kabuki and Noh ensembles, in battle and in rice fields. In modern times, it has tended to be regarded as a festival relic. The current style of community drumming, or kumidaiko, was introduced in 1951 by Grandmaster Kaihachi Oguchi, and further popularized in the 1960s and ‘70s.

More information is available at the Asian Arts and Culture Program (577-2486). Tickets are $15-$20 general public, $7-$10 for students, senior citizens and children under 18. Tickets are available at the Fine Arts Center Box Office (545-2511).