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Taikoproject set to perform at Rose-Hulman March 14

Thursday, March 5, 2009

TERRE HAUTE -- Fresh off a performance at this year's Academy Awards, Taikoproject will bring its entertaining style of Japanese and American taiko drumming to Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology's Hatfield Hall Theater March 14.

The show, part of the college's Performing Arts Series, begins at 7:30 p.m. Tickets are $15 for adults and $12 for non-Rose-Hulman students and children. Tickets are available in the Hatfield Hall ticket office daily from 1-5 p.m., or may be reserved by calling 1-812-877-8544.

Taikoproject is a refreshingly new group of America's premier, emerging taiko drummers who are dedicated to preserving and disseminating American taiko drumming. The Los Angeles-based ensemble balances the traditions and rich history of Japanese and American taiko with a contemporary edge while exploring new dimensions in the art form.

Last month, Taikoproject's rhythmic drum beats were showcased in the 81st annual Academy Awards' musical medley production of "Jai Ho," and "O Saya," composed by A.R. Rahman, from the movie "Slumdog Millionaire."

The group has also been featured in advertisements for Nike and Mitsubishi, was part of Kanye West's 2008 "Glow in the Dark," tour, became the first foreign group to win the Tokyo International Taiko Contest and has had sold-out performances throughout America.

Taiko, in general, are stick percussion instruments that have become popular throughout the world. Japanese taiko drums of different shapes and sizes have been developed into a wide range of percussion instruments that are used in both Japanese folk and classical musical traditions.

Taikoproject is led by artistic director Bryan Yamami and musical director Masato Baba. Yamami spearheaded the creative development of the ground-breaking taiko theatrical production, Taikoproject:(re)generation from 2000-07.

In 2002, he was recognized as one of the "Top 30 Most Influential Asian Pacific Americans Under 30."

Baba began playing and studying taiko at 6 and has toured across America, Germany and Japan.

For more information on Taikoproject, visit www.taikoproject.com.

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