Art of Wadaiko: The Heartbeat of Japan

Saturday, November 1, 2014 (All day) to Sunday, November 2, 2014 (All day)
Photo of taiko drumming ensemble
World-renowned taiko drumming master Eitetsu Hayashi performs with his ensemble, Fu-un no Kai. The engagement is part of Hayashi's tour of the Americas as Japan's cultural envoy, including concerts in Cuba and Trinidad as well as the United States. Internationally recognized and highly respected as a pioneering performer, composer and teacher, Eitetsu has toured extensively around the world to share the art of Wadaiko, which epitomizes the essence of beauty and discipline of Japanese culture. November 1, 8pm. November 2, 3pm. $25-$40.
Creative Arts Building, McKenna Theatre
U.S./Japan Cultural Trade Network and San Francisco International Arts Festival in association with SF State
SF State Box Office
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Despite the popularity of taiko throughout the United States, American practitioners and the general public have had few opportunities to experience the art of Eitetsu Hayashi. He will perform solo with his signature O-daiko (giant taiko) and with his ensemble. Taiko drums crafted by the Asano family (a tradition more than 400 years old) are shipped from Japan for the concert. Hayashi will also be joined on stage by Bay Area special guests: pianist and Professor Dee Spencer, for an improvised rendition of Gershwin’s 1930s classic hit I Got Rhythm, and Ruth Asawa San Francisco School of the Arts classical music students, who will perform a section of Hi-Ten-Yu, a concerto for Japanese drum and orchestra.

Having made his solo U.S. debut with the American Symphony Orchestra at Carnegie Hall in 1984 as the first-ever solo taiko performer, Hayashi has played with major orchestras including the Boston Symphony Orchestra and Berlin Philharmonic, as well as with world-renowned artists including Yosuke Yamashita, Sadao Watanabe, Kim Duk-Soo and Mamady Keita.

The engagement in San Francisco is supported in part by the National Endowment for the Arts. Art Works. Additional support is provided by the Western State Arts Federation, California Arts Council and the Consulate General of Japan in San Francisco. The 2014 U.S. tour of Eitetsu Hayashi and Fu-un no Kai is supported by The Japan Foundation, Arts Council Tokyo.