This past Saturday, April 22nd, Bakuhatsu had a performance at the 103rd Annual UC Davis Picnic Day just like we do every year for many years now. However, this year the club made Bakuhatsu and collegiate taiko history by building a parade float from scratch and then pushing and pulling that float for almost two miles while members rotated between playing on and off the float. We also incorporated painted lanterns and paper cranes that were made by community members at the 2nd Annual Davis Cherry Blossom Festival two weeks prior.
However, all of the effort during Picnic Day cannot rival the effort that was put into the float ahead of time. Our members Greg Wada and Issa Takada put hours of work into constructing, painting, moving, repairing, and decorating the float for a month before it was unveiled to the world, so here's the behind-the-scenes story:
The morning of Picnic Day, I awoke to the sound of engines. Some DeLoreans had parked just across from our vermilion (aka heirloom tomato) yatai float that we had built for the Picnic Day Parade. I looked over to see Issa awake, too, bundled in his ski trip clothes. We had spent the night there, atop the float. Our U-Haul reservation had fallen through, so we mustered as many Bakuhatsu members as we could and pushed the float two miles from my house the night before to make the 8:00 am check-in. Under the streetlights and stars, we installed the final decorations to be ready by morning. In the dead of night, setting down to sleep out the last few hours, the lanterns and paper cranes rustled so peacefully. The place felt sacred.
Bakuhatsu is so honored to have such inspirational members who make their dreams a reality and push our whole club to work harder and achieve the seemingly impossible. It's the attitude we take with all of our endeavors and is one that has been instilled in us through our strong bonds as a club for many years. You can see exactly what we mean by coming to Kizuna 絆 Bakuhatsu Taiko Dan's 6th Annual Showcase this coming Saturday, April 29th at 4 p.m. at the Davis Veteran's Memorial Center Theatre.
Written by Shai Nielson, BTD Historian 2016-2017