top of page


Updated: Feb 22

Hi everybody,

I have been meaning to post an update here but it just hasn't happened. And I had a post all written just how I wanted it and then computer froze... string of profanity... and it was gone.

So here I am trying to do this again!

So Taikopalooza will sadly not be happening this year. My situation with the building is such that I don't know how long I will be in there. I am still searching for a new home for TZD but so far we haven't found anything. Right now we are on an extended lease until the end of July, but I didn't find this out until just recently, so it kind of prevented me being able to get started planning in time.

So what does this mean for the future of Taikopalooza? Well... I see this as an ending, but not THE end. It is definitely the end of having Taikopalooza in our crazy urban jungle location... the wonderful building we have made our home, complete with custom artwork, banners, and tons of wonderful memories. Maybe it is the end for Taikopalooza in Ulm... maybe even in Germany, and maybe in Europe? There are a lot of big changes coming my way, I can feel it.I don't know what that is going to look like, but I am confident that it all has a reason and will be for the best.

Who knows, maybe Taikopalooza has a new start in Scotland or Sicily, or America? Let's see. One thing we can all agree on is that Taikopalooza is a hell of a lot more than a location!


So since this is an 'end for now' post... some major thank yous are in order... First and foremost, to the couple who started this journey with me, Martin & Shonagh... they were with me on this from TP1 and always had my back for whatever crazy idea I had. Two of my best friends. I couldn't have done it without you.

Renate, who all of you know has a heart of gold and loves taiko, all of you, and Taikopalooza like crazy! She has helped with so many things... I can't begin to count them all!

Shoji and Aya... as soon as these two found out about Taikopalooza, Shoji and Aya were committed to having kaDON and Miyamoto Unosuke Shoten be a part of Taikopalooza and they have been an integral part of it since then. And that has been our management team all these years!

Then there are all of our amazing workshop leaders... let's see if we can count them all here...

Martin Doyle & Shonagh Walker, Remi Clemente, Steven Cools, Yumi Celia, Ingmar Kikat, Karen Young, Diana Wu, Shoji Kameda, Joel Mankey, Mikey Gonhata, Yuta Kato, Franco Imperial, Yurika Chiba, George Noone, Kenny & Chizuko Endo, Silke Hansen, Benni Haas, and Eri Uchida!

That is one hell of a group of taiko players! Holy cow... and so many amazing and fun memories with each of you. Karen Young also doubled as our community building director for several years, making that aspect of Taikopalooza worlds better! Thank you for sharing this experience with us and becoming part of the Taikopalooza family. You all contributed so much to Taikopalooza!!! Your committment to the community is completely inspiring.

Then there is all of you ... you who made the trip, brought your taikos, your hearts, your love, crazy energy, and so much more (like alcohol, blood pudding and gummi unicorns...). Many of you - like Kathleen, Zsolt, Nora, Lilo, Liljana, Rainer, Ulrich and others were there every year and Taikopalooza was like a family reunion each time. But a huge thank you to all of you, one timers and 5 timers! Thank you for believing in this and making it happen each year.


I am not sure how we managed to do it, but it seems every year just became better and better. And just when we thought it couldn't get any better, we somehow made it better. I don' think it can be helped when you get such a great collection of creative and crazy people together.

Taikopalooza started out as just a way to make new friends and help those friends also make new friends in an organic, fun, totally relaxed way. It quickly developed into much more. But I always wanted to be sure it was the kind of event where you could just leave your ego, your expectations, stress, politics, and anything else that cold be divisive at the door and just enjoy the hugs, friendship, love and art form that we all have in common - TAIKO! I think we managed to realize this goal year after year.

Hearing what people had heard about it, vs. what they thought about it afterwards was always hilarious... I remember Yuta telling me he could never really get any concrete idea of what it was all about! Just that it was chaotic and crazy but people loved it... But after experiencing it, he understood why.

When you try to put it into words... what we all created, enjoyed and experienced together... it is not really feasible. Is it the concert? The workshops? The mealtimes? The little downtimes? the spontaneity? the relaxed vibe? It's one of those things you just have to experience to really get it. So when I say thank you for believing, I really mean it. You all had to take a risk, take a plunge into the unknown. Thank you for taking that risk and being a part of the uniqueness that really is Taikopalooza.

I am honored and proud to call you all my friends. Thank you for being such a huge and. important part of my story here and my life. I will miss you all!! But I am hoping to see you at one of the other events coming up (We still have a couple of spots for the Utah Taiko Experience... hint hint...). And if you want to come to Ulm for a visit, please let me know! I would love to see you!!

I am wishing you all the brightest of futures and all the hope and positive energy that there is. Keep on hoping, hugging, creating and connecting. We need more of that.

I love you all so much. Big huge taikopalooza-sized hugs!! 🤗🤗🤗🤗🤗🤗🤗



186 views5 comments
bottom of page