"Pure raw energy and power tempered by precision and focus" - Winnipeg Free Press
In the rolling thunder and boisterous dance that drew Amaterasu the Sun Goddess from her cave and returned light to the world, Hinode Taiko was formed. The bold antics of Uzume and the laughter of the gods shaped their performance. From humble workshop beginnings in 1982, using broomsticks and old tires as practice equipment, Hinode Taiko (in Japanese "Rising Sun Drums") went on to build concert-quality drums and study with the greatest taiko players of our day – rooting taiko in the heart of the Canadian Prairies.
Over the past 25 years, Hinode Taiko's original repertoire has won fans on three continents and the group has received accolades from taiko experts around the world. The only Canadian taiko group selected to perform at the inaugural 1997 North American Taiko Conference in Los Angeles, Hinode's stature in North American taiko was affirmed in 2003 when they became the first taiko ensemble (out of the continent’s 150-plus groups) ever chosen for a repeat performance at the NATC.
In 1999 Hinode Taiko brought Canadian taiko back to Japan, performing at the Extasia International Taiko Festival in Matto – the “world centre of taiko drumming” – and at the 22nd annual Summer Matsuri, in Setagaya Tokyo. As the only Canadian taiko group ever chosen to perform at these prestigious venues, Hinode Taiko was able to showcase their unique style live and by national telecast in the country where taiko began.
Hinode’s debut CD, “Hinode Taiko,” produced by Juno-Award-winner Dan Donahue, was released independently in spring 2004. What do the reviews say? Nice stuff, like: “...Smart arrangements that wisely combine bold, primal grooves with complex, interwoven patterns to forge a variety of textures and moods... Here’s hoping we don’t have to stick around 22 more years for a followup.” (Winnipeg Sun) And: “...Just listen as Together slowly draws you in and builds to a thrilling and thunderous conclusion, or marvel as the driving beats of Odaiko threaten to blow a speaker. Every playing of this disc reveals another layer of the onion, and it is a must for anyone who is a fan of Asian music... Hinode Taiko are, without a doubt, masters of their art.” (Uptown Magazine)
Incorporated in 1997, Hinode Taiko's goals have always been to learn the art of taiko, to promote taiko through public performances, and to instruct those interested in the art of Japanese drumming. The ensemble continues to push itself to new artistic heights, while sharing the art and appreciation of taiko through seminars and workshops in schools and the community.