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TAO BRINGS "THE MARTIAL ART OF DRUMMING" TO GMU'S CENTER FOR THE ARTS

February 25, 2010
Contact: Press & Media Relations Coordinator (703-993-8794)

For general information about tickets, seating, parking, etc., for performances and events happening at the Center for the Arts, please contact the ticket office directly at 703-993-2787.

GEORGE MASON UNIVERSITY’S CENTER FOR THE ARTS

PRESENTS

TAO

“THE MARTIAL ART OF DRUMMING”

Saturday, March 20, 2010 at 8 p.m.

Sunday, March 21, 2010 at 4 p.m. 

FAIRFAX, Va., Feb. 18, 2010Described as “powerful, dynamic and unique” by Time Out Chicago, this energetic Japanese ensemble combines athletic bodies and contemporary costumes with explosive Taiko drumming and innovative choreography for an electrifying theater experience. TAO brings “The Martial Art of Drumming” to George Mason University’s Center for the Arts Concert Hall on Saturday, March 20 at 8 p.m. and Sunday, March 21 at 4 p.m. A pre-performance discussion, free to ticket holders, begins 45 minutes prior to the performance on the Center’s Grand Tier III. Pre-performance discussions are sponsored by the Friends of the Center for the Arts. This performance is family friendly and tickets are half price for youth through grade 12 when accompanied by an adult.

“Extraordinarily talented … incomparable muscular zeal.” (Chicago Tribune) This spectacular ensemble was founded in the 1990s by Ikuo Fujitaka, who wished to introduce the centuries-old tradition of Taiko drumming to contemporary audiences. TAO toured Japan for 11 years before its international breakthrough at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe in 2004, and has since performed at venues throughout the world, leaving audiences and critics alike astounded by its extraordinary precision, energy and stamina. Though the group’s art form is typically thought of as male-dominated, TAO creates a unique allure with both male and female performers, who reside in monastic isolation at a mountain compound in Japan where they undergo years of rigorous training in the ancient art of Japanese drumming. In addition to their training on drums, the members of TAO practice a strict exercise regime and meditation to reach the highest level of virtuosity. By drawing on backgrounds as diverse as rock musicians, gymnasts and composers, each member of this amazing ensemble brings their own special flair, resulting in a young and vibrant interpretation of this traditional art form. “Expect to see muscular and athletic bodies pounding rib-shattering beats on huge Wadaiko drums.” (New Zealand Herald)

Tickets for TAO – “THE MARTIAL ART OF DRUMMING” are $44, $36, $22.  Family Friendly: Tickets are half price for youth through grade 12 when accompanied by an adult. Charge by phone at 888-945-2468 or visit cfa.gmu.edu. The Center for the Arts complex is located on the Fairfax campus of George Mason University at the intersection of Braddock Road and Route 123. Paid parking is located in the deck adjacent to the mainstage Concert Hall and FREE parking is located in university lot K.  Visit cfa.gmu.edu.

About Great Performances at Mason

Great Performances at Mason is a program of George Mason University's Center for the Arts, the professional presentation and production arm of the College of Visual and Performing Arts (CVPA). CVPA provides an academic environment in which the arts are explored as individual disciplines and interdisciplinary forms that strengthen one another. The college prepares students for careers as creators, performers, teachers, scholars, arts leaders and arts entrepreneurs. Understanding that an education in the arts is deepened by regular contact with the work of distinguished visiting artists, the Center for the Arts, the professional presentation and production arm of the college, welcomes a variety of professional and world-renowned artists, musicians and actors to its stage. Students have the opportunity to perform, create and exhibit their work in a wide variety of public venues including a 2,000-seat Concert Hall. CVPA is home to the Schools of Music, Dance and Art, the Department of Theater, as well as the Computer Game Design, Arts Management and Film and Video Studies programs. 

About George Mason University

Named the #1 national university to watch in the 2009 rankings of U.S. News & World Report, George Mason University is an innovative, entrepreneurial institution with global distinction in a range of academic fields. Located in Northern Virginia near Washington, D.C., Mason provides students access to diverse cultural experiences and the most sought-after internships and employers in the country.  Mason offers strong undergraduate and graduate degree programs in engineering and information technology, organizational psychology, health care and visual and performing arts. With Mason professors conducting groundbreaking research in areas such as climate change, public policy and the biosciences, George Mason University is a leading example of the modern, public university.