“Nakama no Koe: Our Voices”
Published under Creative commons licence: Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0)
Women in Taiko Project …
This project was dreamed up by Foyle O-Bon, Northern Ireland and Humber Taiko, England. It was funded by the Arts Council of Northern Ireland and we are very grateful for their support.
At the heart of the project was the plan to bring together an international group of women taiko players to create an open-source piece that could be shared and played across the world.
We hoped this piece would speak to and empower women worldwide and to break down stereotypes of women in taiko and in music in general.
We also wanted to stimulate collaborative work and foster relationships between women artists and groups world-wide.
This group was made up of the following:
Hannah-Jasmine Brunskill, Ruth McCartney, Diana McLaughlin, Emma Middleton, Sarah Murphy, Amy Naylor, Lisa Oliver, Junko Okura, Tiffany Tamaribuchi, Lucy Thomas, Fiona Umetsu, Shonagh Walker, and Karen Young.
We came together following the Foyle O-Bon Festival in June 2018 where all the women invited performed and shared the #taikolove with the wider community.
Every woman contributed to “Nakama no Koe” to create a truly collaborative work. We pieced themes and images together from each of our stories and experiences, we shared our difficulties as well our hopes and plans for the future.
We called the piece “Nakama no Koe” which means “Our Voices” and we believe it is a powerful expression of the power and the grace of the women in our taiko community.
We look forward to seeing where this piece will go and how it will be shared across the world!
Fiona Umetsu, Ibuki Taiko and Foyle O-Bon, Northern Ireland