Thank you for a wonderful festival season!
The festival season is always a thrill for our performing members. The 2022 festival season also marked the first year for our newest members, and they stepped up to the challenge to learn a ton of new parts! With our larger group, the theme for the festival became "big" with larger arrangements of several pieces to showcase the entire ensemble and create big visual experiences and sound for audience members.
Hollis, Ashley, Angela and Theresa perform an expanded arrangement of a favorite piece, Drive
. We like to call this arrangement "Overdrive" for the huge sound that results.
The schedule can be daunting for both new members and our veterans. Practices are long and can be physically and mentally demanding with new parts to learn on top of many other preparations that go toward making a successful season. As new member Hollis put it, it was like "drinking from a firehose," but the experience is incredibly rewarding.
Katie rescues Ashley from our mischevious shishi. Photo by Kevin Dingman.
We also had an amazing group of fans who came out to cheer us on despite the rain. Lorraine and Ashley, who both joined in the spring, noted the excitement of taking part in the festival after previously being spectators. Lorraine notes, "Being on stage was such a joy - even through the rain and exhaustion, having awesome energetic crowds to feed off of brought on a whole 'nother level to performing." For Ashley, "it was so much fun taiko-ing our hearts out at J-fest along with their support." We definitely get an energy boost from our fans, and we're happy to see so many people at each show!
Akira, who auditioned in June, notes another favorite aspect of festivals is the time spent with the other members: "I think I've learned that part of playing in a group together... is knowing each other better." We get to share a lot of meals - and jokes - at the festivals, and it's no wonder that we affectionately refer to fellow members as family.
The festival season may be winding down in Missouri, but our performances continue! In November we travel to Tennessee for the Memphis Japan Festival
, and additional performances are in the works for the winter months. Check out our website
for more upcoming shows.
Thank you for another amazing festival season!
Help us repair our drums!
Our drums take a lot of abuse and several are in need of major repairs so we can continue to perform. Please consider making a donation
to help us repair the drums! All donations are tax deductible. Thank you!