Founded in 1982, Ryukyukoku Matsuri Daiko has branches across Japan, North America, and South America. In 2012, the main branch in Okinawa celebrated their 30th anniversary and this year, Ryukyukoku Matsuri Daiko – Los Angeles Branch celebrates 20 years of spreading the Okinawan spirit across Southern California.
The 20th anniversary concert “Uchinaa Chimu Don-Don: Heartbeat of Okinawa” will be held on Saturday, Oct. 17 from 5 – 7:30 pm at the Redondo Beach Performing Arts Center, 1935 Manhattan Beach Blvd, Redondo Beach, CA 90278.
Tickets are general seating and cost $20, children ages 5 and under are free but need a ticket reservation. For tickets, visit www.rmdlosangeles.org/20th , email email@example.com or call (424) 271-2251.
As the art of taiko drumming continues to gain popularity throughout the world, the art of eisa, or Okinawan festival drumming, has also gained popularity.
Though there are many eisa groups in existence, Ryukyukoku Matsuri Daiko is perhaps one of the most internationally recognized for its fusion of odori (traditional dance) and karate movements.
Performers dance and drum simultaneously to an exciting blend of traditional and contemporary Okinawan and Japanese music.
Drummers use several types of drums: the odaiko (big drum), which is suspended in front of the body by long pieces of purple cloth over the shoulder and back; the shime-daiko (hand-held, flat, two-sided drum); and finally, the paranku (hand-held, flat, one-sided drum).
The 20th anniversary concert will showcase how the Okinawan spirit can form friendships that overcome the barriers of distance, time, and language.