Good vibrations

Hey, I’m not beaten yet.

Hey, I’m not beaten yet.

It is not uncommon for powerful art to resonate within our souls, but the ancient art of taiko drumming has power enough to resonate within every inch of our bodies. Literally.

Sacramento Taiko Dan is a school and performing troupe that offers newly composed original works and fresh arrangements of the traditional standards of contemporary Japanese drumming. Designed to provide local audiences with a taste of what the group has prepared for its 2006 season, Kokoro Kara (From the Heart) is both a 17th-anniversary concert and a student summer recital. Taiko master Tiffany Tamaribuchi leads performers ranging in age from 7 to more than 65 years old in a demonstration of the deep power and emotions that can be evoked through this simple and singular art form.

In a live presentation, taiko drumming becomes a dance between the performers and the myriad drums that fill the stage. Through this intimate exchange of energy with their players, the meticulously hand-crafted drums become characters in and of themselves. Feeling their thundering reverberations resonate through your body turns an otherwise merely visual and auditory experience into a wonderfully visceral one.

Translated from Japanese, the word “taiko” simply means “great drum”—a moniker that certainly applies to one of the instruments featured here, a 5-by-6-foot monster that weighs in at just under 800 pounds. The Memorial Auditorium hosts Sacramento Taiko Dan on Saturday, July 22, at 7 p.m.; tickets are $20 or $15 for students, seniors and children. For more information—including details concerning school presentations and a schedule of ongoing classes—visit or call (916) 444-5667.