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Friday, May 11, 2012

Tao goes back to Japan's roots for new shows


By TOMOHIRO OSAKI
Staff writer

Energetic? Aesthetic? Maybe acrobatic? No single adjective is enough to describe the versatility of a Tao performance.

Tao is a wadaiko (Japanese drum) troupe based in the Kyushu region and has a performance that's different from conventional wadaiko shows.

Tao garnered rave reviews for its show at the well-known Edinburgh Festival Fringe in 2004 and 2005, and all 50 shows on its U.S. tour last year sold out.

Tao kicks off a domestic tour titled "Himiko" from May 11. Himiko (175-248) was a queen who ruled the ancient kingdom of Yamatai, which is considered to be the origin of Japan. The driving force behind this tour is the performers' collective wish to help revitalize the country following the Great East Japan Earthquake.

"We thought of it as our mission last year to invigorate Japan (after) the earthquake. But with the country still unable to achieve full recovery, we'd like to continue with this resolution in our newest stages as well," Tao's Yoshinori Suito says. "We named the tour after Himiko, in the hope that Japan can resuscitate itself and start again."

Tao plays Canal City Gekijo in Fukuoka on May 11-13. Tickets cost ¥7,000. For more information, call (092) 271-6062 or visit www.canalcitygekijo.com.


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