Wadaiko Newark

Wadaiko Newark

Newark, California, United States

Founded 2003

Basic Information

    Amateur Performing Grouop

Background Information

Group's Mission and Motivation

Groups Mission and Motivation is to bring Taiko to the community and expose Taiko and the culture to the children in the Newark Schools. Have fun, exercise and perform for the community.
The heart and soul of Taiko is the great drums and the echoing everberation from these instruments reach to the core of your being. Playing them gives one a new focus in life.

Structure and Philosophy
Describe the ensemble's organizational structure and philosophy, including leadership structure, membership policy, and instructional process.

Wadaiko is the Japanese term for the traditional style of drumming known in the western world as Taiko. It is the playing of traditonal Japanese rhythms on traditional style drums. If though Wadaiko Newark is affilated with the school district, it is a separate entity. Membership to the group is invitation only and though audition process. Attendance in the Newark Adult class does not necessary lead to membership in the group, but we do like prospective member to attend the beginning and/or intermediate class.
Members hold drum building sessions and all member build their own drums.

Group History
Describe how, where, and why the ensemble was founded. What was its inspiration?

Wadaiko Newark is a relatively new taiko group serving the people in the Southern alameda County area. Wadaiko Newark was formed in early 2003 in cooperation with the Newark Unified School District.
Wadaiko was formed because of a love of taiko and sharing this love with others. Purpose of Wadaiko Newark is bring the love of Taiko to the community, educating the community and just the pure fun playing the Taiko..

List of Founding Members

Greg Clark, Marie Payne, Sue Eustice, Terry Eustice, Alexis Beverly

List of Current Members

Sue Eustice, Terry Eustice, Marie Payne, Brian Chu, Bonnie Worthington, Joan Wong, Mark Pino

Membership Composition
(i.e. ethnicity, generation, average years of experience, musical backgrounds, and motivation for playing)

Wadaiko Newark is comprised of both men and womem from all ethnic groups and we range from age 14 to 70 (something).
Most members of our group came from other groups and range up to 10 years of experience. Most of the core group has visited Japan twice and attended Taiko workshops while in Japan.
We do teach a Basic 1 & 11 class for Newark Adult Education.
We practice on Saturday mornings and Friday evenings we develop new pieces.

Description of the group's community - regional, ethnic, social, etc.

Core members of the group are also affiliated with the Newark Unified School District and hold eveing classes, Beginning and Intermediate Taiko through the Newark Adult School. Wadaiko Newark performs for the Newark School and is looking to the future to begin Taiko classes for the After School Programs.

Biggest Changes
Describe two of the biggest changes that have characterized the group's development since its founding

Currenty writing our own pieces stressing the creativity of our members. We have also gone from a leader group to a co-operative member group.

Performances, Recordings, Publications

List a selection of your regular performance venues (for example, Denver Sakura Matsuri, Seabrook obon, business conventions, Manzanar Pilgrimage, Maui Marathon, etc.)

Morgan Hill Taiko Expo
Asian American Heritage Festival
Oakland Chinatown Festival
Jack London Square Dragon Boat races
Newark Days

Instructors, Teachers & Mentors
List the instructors, teachers and mentors who have worked with the ensemble.

Core group has studied with Massaaki Kurumay in Miyama Valley and Art Lee of Tokara in Aichi Village while in Japan and has attended many Sonoma Taiko Camps attending workshops with Sensei Tanaka of San Francisco Taiko, P.J. and Roy of San Jose Taiko, Tiffany Tamaribuchi of Sacramento Taiko Dan, Kenny Endo, and Marco Leinhart, also have attended KASA workshops at Emeryville Taiko.
We like to think of Susan Horn and Emeryville Taiko as our "Big Sister" group.


Marie Payne
35753 Cedar Blvd.
(510) 793-5198 or (510) 818-3702


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