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Springing Forward into March!

Happy March! Prota’s new practice coordinators Mike and Masa have been hard at work planning productive practices every week. The past few practices have been all about getting the newbies up to speed with Prota repertoire! We got through Tatsumaki, Jamming on Two (JOT), and Arashi no Mae—all songs Prota has played in community gigs and performances like Taiko Gathering.

We especially had lots of fun playing through Arashi no Mae with different pairings of members. It was almost like each pair had their own way of communicating cues and feeling the beat. This is one of the aspects of kumidaiko that makes it so unique—there is no sheet music or conductor followed, but a different kind of musical language shared between players. As we get to know the repertoire, we get to know each other too, and we look forward to the day we can perform these pieces together again.

Now that newer members are comfortable playing through more songs, we practiced putting together a 15-minute mock gig using the equipment and performers available to us there. We like to make it challenging by giving ourselves just 5 minutes to come up with the order of songs with transitions in between, and decide who plays which parts.

Even though it’s just a practice performance, the energy is high as we put on our game faces and try to create the best set we can. We aren’t sure when our next performance will be, but until then we’ll keep polishing our gig skills!


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