Sunday, June 26, 2005

Taiko Drumming Lecture

On June 27 in Los Angeles, Professor Masumi Izumi of Doshisha University in Japan, will present a lecture titled, "Music and Community Building, Imagined and Real: Nation, Race, Gender, and Politics in Taiko Drumming in Japan and North America". From a press release: "In spite of its appearance as traditional folk music, taiko (Japanese drumming) as a performance art is a relatively new form of music that was developed after World War II. This paper reviews the development of taiko both in Japan and North America. Taiko has boosted nationalism for some Japanese people in the postwar period, and also has contributed to the reconstruction of Japanese American and Japanese Canadian communities since the late 1960s. The paper looks at taiko drumming as a site for many different kinds of expression: ethnic, gender, sexual, national, and spiritual identities. Applying James Scott's concept of "hidden transcript," the paper also elucidates how taiko has historically provided space for cultural and political resistance, both in Japan and North America." The lecture will take place on Monday, June 27 at 7:00 pm, at the Better Living and Learning Center, located at 2361 Venice Blvd in Los Angeles. For more information, Dr. Izumi can be reached at (310) 314-4406.