TEEN AMBASSADOR:AVA MATOS | JANUARY 21, 2018
When I had initially heard about this show I had already made judgements on it. I had many thoughts, a consistent one being had been, “Drumming, really? How could you possibly leech a two hour show from simply just banging on a drum?” As a flute player in my high school band I already have a bit to say about drummers. I always thought that drumming was easy, and that people had only chosen that instrument so they would get an easy A. Of course, I was in for a surprise when the Ambassador Program had introduced the students with a drumming class. The whole time I was worrying about my hand placement, and I had been awkwarding darting looks to other members of the program, checking to see if I had been doing it correctly. When I had finally gotten a rhythm correct I couldn’t help but feel overwhelmed with pride, this feeling makes me wonder the sense of pride that these performers had felt.
When I had walked into the theater my eyes had immediately caught attention to the set up. The thought never even crossed my mind of how one can be creative with their drumming setup, needless to say I was pleasantly surprised. When the performers had walked on stage I was taken aback. Here they were, in layered and imaginabley thick clothing, one might even go as far as to say physically constricting. They blended in perfectly with their setup and truly emphasized Japanese culture.
I had never known how many variations could be made just by the simple beating of a drum. The sound protruding from these drums which rich and resonant in sound, I couldn’t help but be lost in what they had been playing. All the stunts and choreography that they had performed with the drums looked so physically demanding, one can never imagine the preparations and physical therapy that gets incorporated to prevent them from getting hurt. If you looked closely at their faces you could see the sweat glistening on their faces, and their heavy breathing. I could never imagine doing as many shows as they do, and still being able to perfect my routine.
The performers had moved their bodies every way possible to achieve their perfect moves, at one point in the show they had been doing sit ups while pounding the drums. I was astonished at this, this move could be considered difficult, if not impossible, for many. Despite the hard work that goes into putting on a show such as this, it’s obvious that the performers greatly enjoy what they do. The smiles on their faces radiated a refreshing energy that had spilled onto the audience, they had interacted with many of the audience members with comedic routines on their instruments.
Overall it was a very pleasurable experience to be able to watch this show. I feel as if I’m more culturally aware of my surroundings, and know now that I must be more open to what’s available around me, and try new things I’d otherwise think I’d never be interested in.