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#FIUGoesAbroad: Way of the taiko


For some students, summer is about getting some R&R until fall comes around. Others have to take summer classes. And a few take it a step further and study abroad. FIU Goes Abroad will follow students on their trips around the globe and showcase their journeys using their photos, videos and gifs.

During that third and fourth week of class, most students are knee-deep in tests and essays. For Shonda and Shalisha, it’s no different: group projects, exams and language interviews. But we all need to take a break from studies, and our twins did so, with something called taiko drumming. Here is their blog:

Rhythm and movement

As you may know, taiko is a type of traditional Japanese drum. Because our dad is a drummer, this excursion was much more significant for us. Our taiko lesson was an hour and a half, so we had plenty of time to practice! We had 2 instructors, and they were REALLY skilled!

For the lesson, we split into groups of three, and shared a drum to practice. In order to get a louder sound, you had to spread your legs far apart while playing.


In addition, playing required a lot of movement, and switching, so it was a little tiring but really fun! We learned two songs, and after copying their rhythm numerous times, we got to perform by ourselves.

After our lesson, we were fortunate enough to be treated to a performance by the instructors. The song they played was a war song (though we can’t remember the name in Japanese), and it was quite powerful! The instructors’ movements were so graceful and technical, and watching them made us realize even more how amazing taiko drumming can be!

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Read their blog from the beginning here.