Come see our amazing taiko students as they take the stage alongside their Mu Daiko instructors for this popular annual recital.
This year, Passing the Beat will feature a special guest artist, Yuichi Kimura, from Kobe, Japan. The recital will conclude with a special solo performance by Kimura-san, followed by a Mu Daiko student performance of his composition, “Daichi” (Earth), in recognition of the 20th Anniversary of the Kobe Earthquake.
TWO PERFORMANCES ONLY:
- Saturday July 11 at 7:00 PM
- Sunday July 12 at 2:00 PM
Japanese Drummer (Wadaiko Player) Yuichi Kimura
Born in Kobe in 1976, Yuichi Kimura first encountered taiko as a member of the high school taiko club. In the wake of the 1995 Great Hanshin Earthquake that destroyed his home, Yuichi and his team performed taiko at evacuation centers in order to raise the spirits of those suffering. From that experience he felt the mysterious and invigorating effect of taiko on the audience, and decided to set his sights on becoming a professional taiko artist.
From the spring to summer of 1995, he joined Ichiro Jishoya’s group, Wadaiko Ichiro, and performed sixty concerts across Europe. In 1996, he encountered one of the leading experts in taiko, Eitetsu Hayashi, and came under his study as a member of his professional ensemble, Fu-Un no Kai. In 1997 he toured Europe again with Wadaiko Ichiro, performing a grueling 120 times in 6 months. From 1998-2002 he became a full-time supporting member of Eitetsu Hayashi’s Fu-Un no Kai and performed in concerts and events throughout Japan before returning to Kobe to perform with his hometown group.
In 2005, in observance of the 10th anniversary of the Great Hanshin Earthquake, he produced the charity taiko concert, “From Kobe: Thanks and Hopes, Facing to the Future”, and also wrote the original requiem piece “Daichi” (“Earth”), a piece now played by taiko groups across Kansai area. In 2010 he was an invited guest performer of Japan Chinese Orchestra (Nihon Kagakudan) on the mainstage of the World Expo in Shanghai.
In 2011, he began activities as an independent solo artist. Under the theme of “Music Without Borders/One World”, he began with joint performances with Chinese guzheng (koto) artist Wu Fan, and then formed the Kansai-based “Kimura Yuichi & Special Sauce”, a pioneering jazz/classical/latin/world genre-blending collaborative unit.
For young taiko enthusiasts interested in more in-depth training, he has established the Wadaiko Unit “Daiichi no Kai”, which performs concerts and school shows in the area. Yuichi Kimura is a recipient of the 2010 Hyogo Prefecture Sakai Tokitada Music Award, the 2012 Kobe City Cultural Promotion Prize, and the 2013 Hyogo Prefectural Arts Promotion Prize.