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Japanese Drumming Fills Theater with Rhythm

The World Vibration Concert Series continues with the thunderous rhythm of Kaminari Taiko at 2 p.m. June 21 at the Winchester Cultural Center Theater, 3130 S. McLeod Drive. The group, sponsored by the Japanese American Citizens League, takes the ancient art of Japanese drumming to a thrilling level. Tickets are $10 for adults, $7 for children and seniors.

In Japanese, “kaminari” means “thunder” while “taiko” means “great drum.” Kaminari Taiko brings the two words together to form a musical experience in rhythm. Taiko drums were originally used on Japanese battlefields more than 1,400 years ago to strike fear into the hearts of the enemy. Over the next millennium, taiko drumming transcended to the art form it is today.

The late George Goto formed the Las Vegas Kaminari Taiko troupe in 1993. The group’s 25 “uchite” or “taiko drummers” learn a deep respect for taiko and dedicated hours to developing, learning and sharing the art form. In order to respectfully carry on the tradition of taiko drumming, the group maintains a traditional appearance with drums, consisting of many sizes and dashing costumes in arresting colors.

Winchester Cultural Center has hosted musicians from all over the world through the World Vibration series over the last four years. Musicians from Brazil, Ireland, China, Thailand, Mexico and many other countries have brought their distinct rhythms to the Winchester stage. The series continues with the fourth anniversary concert July 19 featuring the African rhythms and sounds of Toumany Kouyate.

Those interested can call 455-7340. Additional information and tickets can be found online at www.accessclarkcounty.com/parks.