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From the first Taiko performance I experienced here in Berlin I was moved. The intense, pulsating energy of the rhythm and sound hit me in a profound way. I was already on my way home, but had to turn back and pick up one of their CDs. At home came the disillusionment: the live experience was irretrievable. What had captured me was not merely the rhythms that were played, but how those rhythms interplayed with the synchronized choreographies to demonstrate the strength, concentration and energy of the abdominal core.Lilo Fischer Berlin

My early Taiko training was under the tutelage of Düsseldorf-based Sensei Peter "Su" Markus of the Hagaruma Daiko.

Not only did he assuage my fears of attempting the art of Japanese drumming, but showed me that it could be done step-by-step. Once I had Chariklia Lehmannfound a Berlin-based practice space and like-minded practitioners, the foundation to continue this new, enriching path was laid.

Much more training followed, including workshops lead by Shoji Kameda (KaDON), by founders of Kodo, Katsuji Kondo and Eiichi Saito, Sensei Sayuri Ito (Amaterasu Taiko from Oberhausen), Sensei Art Lee and his group Tokara from Japan (Nagano Prefecture), Sensei Tanaka Noboru with Waraku-kai Shou from Japan and last but not least Sensei Yoko Tanaka from the Kyoto Taiko Center, which may have influenced my style the most. On a trip to Japan in 2013, I was lucky enough to participate in a variety of workshops and take in the spirit of Taiko at its source. There will always be a place in my heart for that small village dojo nestled in the natural beauty of the Nagano mountains.

One of my greatest experiences was to accompany Sensei Yoko Tanaka as a representative of the Japanese Taiko Foundation in their day-to-day teaching around Kyoto. Alongside with my second journey to Japan, new friendships evolved with several taiko groups in Shizuoka Prefecture and on Hachijo island as well as with Masataka Kobayashi (Bonten Taiko/Tokyo).

A real great step in our development was the partnership with Chariklia Lehmann, Chariklia Lehmanna musician as one member in the teaching stuff of the group Taiko Connection (Beate Hundsdörfer). Chariklia plays passionately Taiko since 2012.

She trained with Taiko Connection Berlin, gained experience in the field of professional Taiko drumming as a performer and teacher for taiko-school-projects as well as regular classes. In the beginning of 2018 she joined iki iki TAIKO in Berlin continuing with learning, teaching and performing the drumming art of Taiko.

iki-iki TAIKO 生き生き太鼓 is a culmination of 14 years of study and practice, in which I am realizing my dream to create a Berlin Taiko group. The meaning of the single word iki 生き is life, due to the repetition of iki iki 生き生き, it changes the meaning to cheerful and lively in the sense of the well known adjective genki 元気. 

We look forward to sharing this dream with other Taiko drummers and developing our discipline together.