Sado Island drumming

Sado Island drumming

Learn the techniques and rhythms of taiko drumming from a former member of the world renowned Kodo Drummers of Sado Island.

From its ancient origins as military exercises and entertainment in castles and shrines, taiko drumming has recently evolved into a new phenomenon of ensemble drumming entertaining audiences across the world. 

Vast numbers of amateur and professional groups have developed over the last 50 years but the most famous taiko group are the Kodo Drummers from Sado Island. In Japanese the word kodo conveys two meanings: 'heartbeat' the primal source of all rhythm and, read in a different way, the word can mean 'children of the drum', a reflection of Kodo's desire to play their drums simply, with the heart of a child. Kodo's performance include pieces based on the traditional rhythms of regional Japan, pieces composed for Kodo by contemporary songwriters, and pieces written by Kodo members themselves. 

For those staying on Sado Island, you have the opportunity to visit the Kodo drumming centre and receive a lesson from a former member of the Kodo group. During the session you will have the chance to try the various kinds of drums and enjoy playing using the wide range of sticks. This is a fun session and a unique opportunity to try your hand at one of Japan's most famous musical traditions. 

When to go: The Taiko Drumming Experience is offered all year round but as there are very few teachers certain days may not be available. If you are keen to include this on your trip please ask and we will enquire for you.

Sado Island drumming

located in Sado Island

Read more >

Interested in this Experience? It is included in this tour:

  • Journey through the lush rural landscapes in Tohoku, a land steeped in tradition and mystery, on this classic two-week itinerary.

    Northern Highlights

    When the famous Haiku poet Matsuo Basho set off on his pilgrimage to the North he was to discover rural Japan, a land of lush landscapes and rich in legend. As you journey through the pilgrimage towns of Tohoku and on to remote Sado Island you'll experience some of the same Japan as the great poet.

    Read more >

    Journey through the lush rural landscapes in Tohoku, a land steeped in tradition and mystery, on this classic two-week itinerary.

Other Music, theatre & dance experiences

View more >
  • Noh


    A subtle blend of music, dance and drama dating back to the 14th century

    Read more >

  • Summer Sonic

    Summer Sonic

    All the fun of a music festival minus the portaloos and camping. Just remember the way back to your hotel instead of your tent.

    Read more >

  • Kabuki


    Attend a Kabuki performance to see outlandish costumes, dramatic stunts, high speed action and great story telling.

    Read more >

  • Bunraku


    See this classic form of puppet theatre at the National Bunraku Theatre in Osaka

    Read more >

  • Backstage theatre tour

    Backstage theatre tour

    Permission to access all areas in Japan's oldest Kabuki theatre in Kotohira.

    Read more >

  • Taiko drumming lesson

    Taiko drumming lesson

    Take a break from Tokyo sightseeing and beat a drum to your heart's content

    Read more >