Taliesin Live - Mugenkyo Taiko Drummers: Tribe


This autumn, the UK’s original touring taiko Tribe returns to the road with a brand new show of skill, stamina & red-hot rhythms to stir your soul!

As Mugenkyo approach their 25th year as Europe’s longest established taiko organisation, they celebrate the growth of their Tribe of performers from across the globe, with the latest captivating performance of sharp synchronisation, mysterious masked choreography and sumptuous soundscapes, all wrapped up in a breath-taking display of high energy and powerful rhythms on huge taiko drums.

"This show is not one to be missed."  ***** Edinburgh Evening News

“Mugenkyo showcases its musical presentation in totally modern style, making the esoteric thoroughly pop… sustaining its appeal right to the climax, winning thunderous applause.”    The Stage

"This is not music for wimps. A tour de force of both music and stamina… If the tour bus is parked in your neighbourhood my advice is go to the gig and don't take the cotton wool."  Avant Magazine

"Taiko encompasses many things. It's physical, it's music, it's rhythm, it's energy, it's dance, it's spiritual, it's theatrical - it's so much more than 'just drumming'. A live Taiko concert is a very moving experience. The reverberation of the drums goes right through you - it's not just about hearing the drums, or watching the show - it's about feeling the music in a very physical way."  Miyuki, Founding member

“Like watching Mad Max, Kill Bill, Kodo, Stomp & Keith Moon, all rolled into one big barnstorming display…. Hold on to your seats!”


Friday 9 November 7.30pm

Prices and Times:

Fri 9th Nov


Pricing Information:

Full price:£ 20
Under 18's:£ 13
Full time students:£ 13
Schools.:£ 13
Senr.Citizens:£ 18
Other Conc.:£ 18

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Mugenkyo Taiko Drummers are the UK’s first and only professional touring taiko group, and Europe’s most established performing company in this fast-expanding field. Through performing over 100 concerts a year, the group have built a solid reputation for their hard-hitting and energetic performances since their establishment in 1994.

Mugenkyo’s main work is touring a full-length concert at theatres and concert halls, including London Queen Elizabeth Hall, Nottingham Royal Concert Hall, Cambridge Corn Exchange, Gateshead Sage, Reading Hexagon, Bristol Colston Hall, Edinburgh Usher Hall, amongst others. The group has appeared on numerous television and radio programmes worldwide, including the Brit Awards, BBC Last Night of the Proms, the Generation Game and has even featured in a Bollywood film.

Mugenkyo present taiko in a modern and theatrical style – with precise choreography, dramatic lighting, and a variety of costumes ranging from the post-apocalyptic industrial to gorgeous earthy silks. The concert is extremely musically varied; powerful rhythms, huge taiko drums, delicate shinobue bamboo flute, expressive percussion, and dance. Through their 21 years of rigorous touring, Mugenkyo have developed a style that is uniquely their own. Retaining the traditional spirit of taiko, yet creating a thoroughly contemporary sound, Mugenkyo are forging a new path with their innovative approach.

Mugenkyo push the boundaries of Taiko with their various artistic collaborations. In 2004 Mugenkyo presented the show “Rinnetensho” with Tokyo-based contemporary dance group “Company East” on the theme of re-incarnation, a multi-media presentation using taiko, dance and projected visuals. In 2005 Mugenkyo collaborated with bagpiper and Scottish Musician of the Year, Stuart Cassells, which was broadcast live worldwide on BBC Last Night of the Proms. More recently Mugenkyo have toured with Hanayui from Sado Island, from the world-famous Kodo Drummers, appeared with electronic dance artist Kenji Williams at the Glastonbury Festival, toured with Japanese bellydance artist Lale Sayoko and co-wrote and performed “Yatra” a collaboration of South Asian and Scottish traditional music for the 2008 & 2009 Mela Festivals. In 2010 & 2011 the group collaborated on a joint tour with saxophonist Tommy Smith and the Scottish National Jazz Orchestra. In 2012 the founding members celebrated 20 years since starting and in 2014 the group celebrates its official 20th anniversary.

Festival highlights over the years have included appearances at: Glastonbury Festival, the Rhythm Sticks Festival, Phoenix Rock Festival, and the Marlborough & Cork Jazz Festivals. Mugenkyo have also performed at numerous large-scale multimedia events at venues such as London ExCeL & O2 Arena, Birmingham NEC & Manchester GMEX.

Mugenkyo perform in Japan regularly: representing Europe at Japan’s best-known taiko festival “Extasia” in 2012, on invitation by the Japanese government to open the 2005 EU-Japan Year of Exchange, their 10th Anniversary Concert in 2004, and for the prince and princess at the British Embassy in Tokyo. To continue their ongoing training at the highest level, and further develop their strong foundations in technique, Mugenkyo return to Japan regularly, where founders of the group Neil Mackie and Miyuki Williams lived and trained intensively in 1992 - 1994 with Master Drummer Masaaki Kurumaya Sensei.

In 2002 the group established the Mugen Taiko Dojo: Centre for Taiko Drumming in the UK – the first purpose-built taiko dojo in Britain, based in rural Central Scotland, and a dedicated training centre for players from all over the UK. Under the umbrella of the Mugen Taiko Dojo, members of the group tour an award-winning educational concert at schools, undertake educational outreach projects with local authorities all over the UK, and run in-depth courses for adults and weekend residential workshops at the dojo.