I went a little early so that I was sure to be on time, since I'd never been to CCAE before. It was in the back in the dance room. I was pleased to see that we would be using real drums (though they had a few packing taped tires just in case. One of the people there who was also early gave me some ear plugs, which made me so happy. I was also happy to learn we would be in our bare feet.
I praticed some kanji while I waited for the class to start. Everyone arived on time. We introduced ourselves and most people people there had some musical background. One woman had even done a lot of taiko while growing up in Japan (she was a treat to watch; she looked so cool doing it.) Then we started with warm ups. I suprised myself by doing 25 real push ups (not the stupid woman ones) but I was glad I knew the japanese numbers because I had lost cound and so when I was tiring I had nijuni to make me finish those last couple of push ups.
My sit ups were oh so more pathetic.
We finished warming up and stretching. Then they played the simple peice that they would, in the three hours, teach us to play. I was a bit skeptical, but hey, aim high.
They set us up and taught us basic stuff. I got the tall standing drum to start, which was a bit hard to apply the basic techniques to. The class had a tendency to speed up while playing. I tried to keep visual beat with the person in the middle. I could never get the form down, but I did suprise myself with the rhythms. However, when things did speed up, I lost it. I was much worse than 2/3 of the class.
We rotated on the drums so we could try all the different types.
The breaks were beatufilly times, the exercises did a good job of establishing that we could do it and usually also pushed us beyond our limits. Once we'd gotten some basic hits down (light hits, medium hits, large hits, horse rhythm, rim hits, vocalizations)they taught us and had us memorize (quite well to my surprise) the two fairly complex peices. They had the whole class play both together and then split us into groups and had us "preform" the interlocking peices to form the main peice. Half the class would watch, the other half would preform. Since most people were pretty good it sonded reaonsable at the end. Most of the people picked it up really well.
It's hard to see in the photo, but you have to stand with your feet about 3-4 shoulder widths apart.
And then they finished off the class with a preformance of their own which was a lot of fun to watch.
It was fun, it was hard and I'm going to be sore tomorrow. My knees held up (they've been bad the last few days and we had to stand with our legs far apart, which was a little hard on them. All in all it was a great three hours and they did a really good job of teaching a lot to us in a very short amount of time.
I then finished off the day by not buying some silly pants at hootenanny, getting some rice traingles (o-nagiri?) at kotobukiya and some bubble tea. I got home just before it finished raining.