The first ever (and hopefully annual) Eisa Drum Festival took place on Saturday on the Great Lawn of Kapiolani Community College. It was a great event, and lead organizer Shari Tamashiro — along with advisors Norman Kaneshiro and Derek Ichiro Shiroma, and countless other volunteers and performers — deserves a standing ovation for pulling it all together.
The Okinawan drumming and dancing was mesmerizing, the taiko drum performance by Kenny Endo‘s troupe was exhilirating, the food was delicious, and the venue was absolutely perfect for an family-friendly evening celebration. The festival also proudly lays claim to hosting the state’s largest-ever paranku drum performance, in which my wife and youngest son participated.
Check out my video of the festival above (or on Vimeo or YouTube), which includes the bustling scene inside the KCC cafeteria as well as excerpts from several performances on the main stage. (It does not include, however, the “grand finale,” which I unfortunately missed while off in search of a power outlet.)
On a technical note, this was my first outing using a Glif mount and monopod for my iPhone, which definitely made a difference in avoiding the shakes. Next time, I just have to remember to bring my extended battery pack as well!