‘Taiko’ drums beat for Bohol’s heritage

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‘Taiko’ artists of the Mt. Fuji Taiko Symphony Orchestra

‘Taiko’ artists of the Mt. Fuji Taiko Symphony Orchestra

A benefit concert featuring Japan’s taiko drums will be staged by the Cultural Center of the Philippines together with Tokyo Juho Inc. to aid efforts in the rehabilitation and restoration of cultural and heritage sites in Bohol.

Dubbed The Taiko Effect: Drums of Change, the concert is slated on April 11 and 12, 8 p.m., at the CCP’s Tanghalang Nicanor Abelardo (CCP Main Theater).

The show will be headlined by The Mt. Fuji Taiko Symphony Orchestra, the taiko group Arahan, and the karate school Hasegawa Karate in an exciting collaboration between music and the martial arts. Singer and recording artist Aisaku Yokogawa will render Japanese and Filipino songs, as well as act as host and translator for the show.

The taiko drum is a traditional Japanese musical instrument. “Taiko” has been developed into a broad range of percussion instruments that are used in both Japanese folk and classical musical traditions.


The Mt. Fuji Taiko Symphony Orchestra, formerly known as the Yamanashi Japanese Drum Symphony Orchestra, was founded by the late conductor and composer Sen Amano (1934-2014) who was in his time a prominent Taiko performer.

The Hasegawa Karate group

The Hasegawa Karate group

This symphony orchestra was established to share the beauty of traditional Japanese performing arts, specifically the taiko not only within Japan but also to the rest of the world. It has displayed their mastery of the art by breathing life into various types of plays and theatrical musicals, and they have repeatedly created fantastical imagery through a symphony of sound. The orchestra is based in Yamanashi prefecture where Mt. Fuji is located.

Arahan is another prominent taiko group hailing from the Yamanashi Prefecture, and was led by conductor and composer Sen Amano. They are also a member of the Yamanashi Artistic and Cultural Association and often perform in collaboration with the Mt. Fuji Taiko Symphony Orchestra.

Hasegawa Karate is led by Karate Master Shinichi Hasegawa, a six-time World Karate Champion who established seven Karate Schools within the Yamanashi Prefecture whose doctrine is to promote Karate as a means to educate the youth, and strengthen their physical and mental well-being. He and wife, Yumi Hasegawa, who is active in the management of the Hasegawa Karate School, have close to 1,000 Shitoryu Karate students in the Philippines learning their style of martial arts.

Finally, Aisaku Yokogawa is a Japanese national who has spent most of his life in the Philippines. He considers himself a “Pinoy” by heart, and takes great pride in the fact that his knowledge of the Filipino language and culture is at par with that of a native’s.

Yokogawa is a Japanese OPM artist committed to sharing his art and talent in singing JPM (Japanese-Pilipino Music). He recently released an album under Universal records and i&i records featuring diamond classics such as Ted Ito’s “Ikaw pa Rin” and other 90’s JPM hits.

The Taiko Effect: Drums of Change benefit concert will be the first of a series of events aimed at fostering a stronger relationship between the Philippines and Japan through a cultural exchange program, spearheaded by the chairman of the Asean Exchange Committee, Hiromi Ishioka (chief executive officer of Akafuji Daiko) with the support and cooperation of the Embassy of the Republic of the Philippines, Tokyo.

For tickets, call Ticketworld at 891.9999 or visit www.ticketworld.com.ph. For more information, visit culturalcenter.gov.ph and facebook.com/thetaikoprojectph.

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