Taiko Thunder

Nov 30
Ben Lim and Midnight Taiko

Ben Lim and Midnight Taiko

“Ben Lim, centre, and fellow Midnight Taiko Kai members pound out a heavy-duty beat at the Nikkei Cultural and Senior Centre.” [1]

The sound could be described as “deafening.”

Of course, that’s the result when nearly 10 people get together for the purpose of beating several large drums simultaneously.

They are taiko drums, unique Japanese drums that resemble wine barrels.

And the group in question is Calgary’s Midnight Taiko Kai.

The members meet twice weekly at the Nikkei Cultural and Senior Centre, the home base of the Calgary Japanese Community Association, to practise the art of taiko drumming.

“Taiko drumming is heavy duty. We use sticks called bachis to hit the drum as hard as possible,” drummer Ben Lim says.

Lim, 62, founded Midnight Taiko in 2006, after retiring from his art-framing business in 2003.

As member Peggy Billingsley describes it, the name comes from the idea that those who belong to the group would “gladly drum all night long, right through midnight.”

Besides acting as president of Midnight Taiko, Lim also teaches aikido at SAIT and takes ballroom dancing. …

Read all about it here Full Story from Nov 12, 09

  1. Photo by Leah Hennel, Calgary Herald []
  • Aikido Background

    Aikido (合気道) is a Japanese martial art developed by Morihei Ueshiba as a synthesis of his martial studies, philosophy, and religious beliefs. Aikido is often translated as “the Way of unifying (with) life energy” or as “the Way of harmonious spirit.” Ueshiba’s goal was to create an art that practitioners could use to defend themselves while also protecting their attacker from injury.

  • Aikido Techniques

    Many of the strikes (打ち, uchi) of aikido are often said to resemble cuts from a sword or other grasped object, which may suggest origins in techniques intended for armed combat. Other techniques, which appear to explicitly be punches (tsuki), are also practiced as thrusts with a knife or sword. Kicks are generally reserved for upper-level variations; reasons cited include that falls from kicks are especially dangerous, and that kicks (high kicks in particular) were uncommon during the types of combat prevalent in feudal Japan.

  • Objective of Aikido

    The main objective of Aikido is to attain harmony of body, mind and soul to show the attacker the irrationality of his own actions. It means a way of energy unification within and with the opponent. However, like other martial arts, the objective of Aikido is not to defeat or hurt or achieve victory over the opponent. It aims at winning over oneself than on someone else.

  • Canadian Aikido History

    Takeshi Kimeda is credited with introducing Yoshinkan Aikido to Canada on his arrival in 1964 in Toronto, Ontario. Kimeda, presently ranked 7th dan, systematically built up a network of dojos in the Toronto, Hamilton and Windsor areas. This development was enhanced by the arrival of Mitsugoro Karasawa, now a 6th dan, in 1970.

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