Drumming to a different beat

A Japanese taiko drum performance is one of the most invigorating and soul-stirring traditional experiences foreigners could experience in the destination.

When seated close to taiko drummers – a special arrangement possible when the performance is reserved for a private group – the beats of the drum become almost tangible and the audience can feel their skin throb with every rise and fall of the performers’ arms.

A private taiko performance as part of a business event programme can be organised by Taiko-Lab, one of Japan’s largest and most active specialists in the traditional percussion instrument. Taiko-Lab represents a number of local taiko troupes that put up around 150 traditional and contemporary performances around the world annually.

One of its troupes to watch is the three-men Mugen, a multi-talented team that brings a young and chic vibe to the performance. Another star troupe is Yuza-rakuza, whose four members are no strangers to the world stage.

Through six main branches and 14 studios across five cities in Japan, such as Tokyo, Kyoto and Osaka, Taiko-Lab also conducts energetic and fun-filled drum lessons for corporate groups. Participants are given happi coats to wear and taken through the basics of taiko drumming on their own drum by enthusiastic coaches, before coming together to stage a performance. Plenty of laughter and squeals are promised along the way!

Corporate groups can also choose to combine a professional performance with a hands-on experience. Such a combination runs for 60 to 90 minutes.

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