Tantara Taiko Drumming Text

About Tantara

Tantara Taiko — Profile

We began life in January 2003 after John Bolwell returned from a Taiko Drumming study trip to Japan where he trained with Master Masaaki Kurumaya and Liz Walters.

He setup a local group to keep up the practice of what he had learnt and to pass on some of these skills to others who were interested in learning this art.

Initially practising on plastic dustbins, the group started to get offers of gigs so a name was needed. Tantara was decided upon mainly because we liked the sound of it and it evoked the feeling of the drum language by which taiko is learnt.

Soon drums started arriving, several bought by group members, some via money received from gigs and a few made by group members.

We now have an established core of about a dozen members. Some play in performances, others just play for the enjoyment.

As well as Kurumaya Sensei and Liz Walters of Tamashii Taiko our teachers and inspirations have been :
Mugekyo Taiko Drummers, Hiroshi Motofuji, Art Lee, Bucks Taiko.

Members of our group have also studied with and greatly enjoyed workshops with Mark Alcock and James Barrow.

John would also like to acknowledge his many influences from 37 years of martial arts practice. For details of these see www.penninetaichi.co.uk.



“Tantara” is a shortening of the Latin “taratantara”, an onomatopoetic word that in ancient times evoked the terrible sound of the war trumpet — Tara tantara.

We also liked the universiality of the word :