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Peter Lew
Became a Wadaiko Newark
Member in 2007
and a Drum Builder in 2007

I have been interested in Taiko since the first
time I saw the San Francisco Taiko perform at
the Cherry Blossom festival in the early 1980's.
It was the same feeling watching the San Jose
Taiko perform at their various festivals. I
wanted to learn to play the Taiko but was not
willing to travel to San Francisco or San Jose,
but most of all I was afraid to fail. After many
years of watching and wanting to be able to
perform like those groups, my wife told me
about an adult class in Newark that is teaching
Taiko. I signed up for the fall class in 2004. I
found out that I am a slow learner but with the
help of fellow classmates and most of all the
patience and understanding from the three
instructors Sue and Terry Eustice and Marie
Payne, I am now very confident that I can
perform as well as my classmates. I have
learned not to criticize but to teach. If I am not
able to teach, then set a good example.

I wanted to have my own drum so that I could
practice in my garage. I didn't like using a
garbage can or plastic pail. In June 2005,
Terry Eustice started a drum building class on
Saturday afternoons. It is a great experience
seeing a drum being built from an old barrel to
a beautiful drum. But, most of all it was
priceless watching people who never handled
a tool, let alone various power tools, build their
own drum. It took teamwork, everyone helping,
from gluing, sanding, staining and to stretching
the skin.

My goal as an elder Kohai is to see everyone
smile, whether they are  playing or building
their drum. Not just smile with the mouth but
also with their eyes and from the heart. Playing
Taiko has given me this feeling of confidence,
patience, joy and exercise.

Alexis         Andrea       Bonnie  

Brian            Cliff           Greg     Jo

Joan         Marie      Pat      Sue   

Susie    Takako       Terry   Wanda
Peter playing a
at FanimeCon
on May 23,
(Click on picture
for larger version.)
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