Emanating an ancient cavernous thunder, a group of disciplined, muscled bodies pound traditional Japanese drums with sticks the size of a forearm in a spectacle of sound, precision, and athleticism. In their latest work, Evolution, Japan’s preeminent taiko ensemble showcases the spectacular sonic possibilities of these time-honored instruments. Led by Kabuki theater luminary Tamasaburo Bando, the members of Kodo summon decades of training to exalt the drum in this tightly choreographed pageant of percussion.
“Kodo” translates into the sound of the beating heart - of fundamental vitality - and imagines the first sound heard in the mother's womb as the sound of a big drum. One of the most familiar and influential taiko ensembles in the world, Kodo has been delivering the heart-pounding rhythms of the taiko to all corners of the globe since 1981. They are credited with being instrumental in bringing international popularity to a little known art form. With a message of ‘One Earth’, pure energy and athleticism, Kodo has been exploring the limitless possibilities of the traditional Japanese taiko drum since their inception. Their powerful music honors the traditions of their home, Sado Island in the Sea of Japan, while forging new paths forward.