Breathing New Life into Our Music
It’s always exciting when we get to welcome a guest to our practices. Recently we were joined by taiko performer, composer and choreographer Kris Bergman, along with dancer Minh Nguyen, for a morning of drumming and dance. Kris and Minh have been travelling and teaching songs, playing styles, choreography and drumming techniques to taiko players around the country. During their time with us, we concentrated on refining one of our original compositions, Ibuki.
We first performed Ibuki in 2013 as a collaboration with Afriky Lolo, a West African dance troupe located in St. Louis. The music draws upon traditional African rhythms but is played on the taiko. Afriky Lolo’s dancers joined us onstage, creating a audio-visual experience that blends two diverse cultures. But when we aren't performing Ibuki with Afriky Lolo, how do we create visual appeal without losing the character of the music? In come Kris and Minh, who offered fantastic guidance to refine our choreography.
Above: Kris and Minh demonstrate control in mirroring each other's movements.
Below: The group practices new movements.
After just one morning of experimentation we came out with a ton of ideas and have been refining the movements to be performance-ready. We're looking forward to sharing the "new" Ibuki with our audiences!
Free Performance this Sunday
We return to the Maryland Heights Community Center on February 23rd for the second annual WorldFest. This family event celebrates the diversity of the community through food and music. Spend the afternoon with us and enjoy Samba, Irish and Bulgarian dance, belly dancing, Zydeco, taiko and other musical performances at this free event!
Sunday, February 23, 2020
12:00 - 5:00 PM
Maryland Heights Community Center
2300 McKelvey Road, Maryland Heights, MO
Taiko Performance: 3:10-3:55 Main Stage
Demonstration: 4:15-4:45 Milennium Room C