WORKSHOPS FOR TAIKO GROUPS
If your Taiko group is looking to learn some new skills, a new piece of repertoire, or is simply seeking some new drills and exercises to reinvigorate your training, we have multiple options for you to choose from. Our instructors have extensive training and practical experience in various styles of Taiko and related techniques, and we're happy to share this knowledge and offer any guidance we can. Below is a list of some of our more popular workshops, but please get in touch via the contact page for a full list and pricing information.
Explore the Space (All Levels)
In this workshop we provide a fundamental 'Taiko Toolbox' of movement patterns and rhythmic expressions to help participants effectively ‘colour’ the space around them, and develop balanced symmetrical form behind the drum. Drills will focus on increasing awareness of optimal striking positions, dynamic grips and stances, strengthening the individual’s internal clock, and exercises for moving effectively around the drum. The workshop also covers an introduction to flashy stick tricks.
Tsuchigumo Uchikomi (All Levels - 1 hour long)
This workshop is designed to be a challenging "Tsuchigumo style" Taiko workout, which will test your levels of fitness, stamina, flexibility. We also offer tips on improving striking technique, form, and body awareness. Topics covered include the effective use of bodyweight, positioning and relative shapes, and using dynamic grips and stances. Participants will be taken through a rigorous full body warm-up, focussing primarily on the key muscles and joints used regularly in Taiko playing, and the session will end with and equally detailed cool down stretch to help protect against injury.
Katsugi Basics (Can be scaled to suit to all levels)
Participants will be taken through an introduction to Katsugi Okedo playing, beginning with a primer on optimal drum setup, basic grips, arm movements, and exercises for maintaining control of the drum whilst in motion. Exercises will focus first on improving technique (especially left hand technique), when playing both front skin and horizontally. A variety of specially created drills and patterns will be used to help improve cross-over speed, power, dexterity, and rhythmic vocabulary.
Cross-hands Technique (Can be scaled to suit all levels)
This workshop will detail how to develop a smooth, relaxed flow between two drums, with emphasis on the related techniques, grips, movements and body positions used to execute this type of playing effectively. You will learn how to maximise your movement potential and relaxation to improve speed, timing, visual impact, power, accuracy, and articulation on multiple drums.
Progressive Shime Daiko Techniques (Intermediate-Advanced)
This workshop is designed to improve technique on Shime Daiko, using a deconstructed method of practice that promotes relaxation, whilst improving speed, power, accuracy, timing, articulation, and dynamic range. The workshop features a series of challenging drills based around specially selected drum rudiments and rhythmic patterns, which will help expand playing vocabulary.
Unlocking Creativity and Improvisation (Intermediate)
The aim of this workshop is to unlock the individual’s creative potential, by demystifying the process of solo improvisation and composition, freeing the mind to play without stress or anxiety. A series of specially created drills will help participants develop their own toolbox of rhythms and movement patterns, and build confidence to solo without fear in a range of musical contexts.
Polyrhythms and World Grooves for Taiko (Intermediate-Advanced)
In this workshop we’ll take you through the brain-melting minefield of playing multiple rhythms and meters at the same time, and introduce you to some wicked-cool grooves from around the world. We’ll demonstrate how these can be used within the context of Taiko using multiple voices and textures to create some fun grooves of your own. A great workshop for gaining a deeper understanding of complex, interlocking rhythms, and odd time signatures.
Taiko Set Playing (Intermediate-Advanced)
This workshop focuses on a kit style multi-drum setup, and how to move and play in a relaxed and effective way across two or more sources. Exercises will help you develop general playing technique, and teach you how to perform smooth transitions between drums whilst leading from either side. We also offer advice and ideas on orchestration, use of textures, and showmanship to help you create that killer drum solo!
The Riddler (Intermediate-Advanced)
In this workshop, participants will learn a series of drum rudiments and hybrid rhythmic figures, which are played in combination across three drums. It's an intense, challenging, and fun multi-drum sticking exercise that will teach you how to lead efficiently and effectively with both hands; offer a huge variety of rhythmic options for composition and solos; and test your memory, dexterity, articulation, timing, speed, and movement. Will you face "The Riddler"?
We also offer a range of repertoire workshops. All workshops are based on original Tsuchigumo compositions, traditional songs, open source pieces, or those we have been given permission to teach by the relevant composer. Below is a selection of our most popular workshops, but we have many other songs in our teaching repertoire, so please contact us for a full list.
“Kuru-Kuru” Workshop (All Levels) - A fun and popular entry level piece, with focus on foundational techniques, shapes, and body movement.
“Mozamjam” Workshop (Beginner - Intermediate) - This pieces uses the Mozambique rhythm as a base, and brings together other world music flavours in a fun and challenging celebration of drumming. One of our most sought after workshops!
“Omoi Yo!” Workshop (Intermediate-Advanced) - Using our bodyweight to effectively communicate mood, power, and grace is a hugely effective skill to develop, and the concepts introduced in this piece will make you think about how your body moves; help you develop upper/lower your body co-ordination; and improve your cross rhythm listening skills.
“Hotei No Yoroi” Workshop (Intermediate-Advanced) - With a funky, swinging base, this fun but physically demanding piece will provide a stern test of your stamina, and features lots of syncopated rhythms, and dynamic movement.
“Go Rin No Sho” Workshop (Advanced) - A blazing fast Shime daiko piece for 5 players, inspired by the "Book of Five Rings" by Musashi Miyamoto. This workshop will test the limits of your hand speed and technique, and features a variety of rudimental figures to be mastered. The song is broken down into five movements; "Void", "Earth", "Water", "Fire" and "Wind", each with their own unique set of challenges. This workshop also offers a primer on small drum technique with drills to help develop speed, articulation, timing, and dynamics.
“Tatsumaki” Workshop (Advanced) - One of Tsuchigumo's signature pieces, and the first song we ever performed in public at the inaugural European Taiko Conference. This powerful and intense cross-hands piece features sharp, dynamic choreography, and soloing across two drums. The workshop will focus on all related techniques, including the effective use of bodyweight both laterally and vertically, dynamic stances, and multi drum soloing.