My Taiko Story

    I came to taiko in a rather roundabout way,..I have always been a musician. I began piano lessons with an amazing teacher and mentor - my mother - at the age of 4, and grew up surrounded with music and art (my father, another amazing person and mentor is also an incredible artist). At some point around 17, I decided I wanted to be a professional musician.

    I loved singing and composing and at 18 started a band, Agnes Poetry, with my brother and sister. We enjoyed almost immediate success which sent us on a roller-coaster ride of late night composing sessions, concert venues and recording studios over the next 9 years. At the same time I was also working as a retail business manager, & management trainer / recruiter. As touring activity with Agnes Poetry slowed down and a career in retail business management looked unavoidable, I made a drastic turn and decided to go to University to study my real passion: MUSIC!

    I spent three years at Pasadena City College studying composition and vocal arts under some of the finest musicians I have ever known. After graduating from PCC I continued my musical studies at California State University Northridge.  It was during this time that I heard about an intriguing musical discipline that combined physical fitness with music. I decided to see what the Taiko Drum course was all about.

    After my first class I was hooked. I was studying under a man who is now a very close friend and collaborator, Joel Mankey. I loved the combination of fitness and music as well as the tradition and the energy of taiko. Joel made it fun and interesting and challenging. In my second semester we were fortunate  to have Masato Baba - one of the finest taiko players around - doing a residency with us and I was able to study for the semester under his and Joel's instruction. I became very passionate about taiko and knew it was something I wanted to take further.

    I continued on to play with CSUN's performance group Jishin Taiko, and 2 years later upon graduation was offered a job at Crespi Carmelite High School as a music teacher. As part of my curriculum I suggested a taiko ensemble. The school loved the idea and in 2007 we started the first High School taiko program in America, Celt Taiko.

    The Celt Taiko program started with one class and 4 students, and when I left had grown to 4 classes and almost 50 students. It provided me with many incredible performance and learning opportunities. I was able to attend Loyola Marymount University and earn my Masters degree in Music Education and Teaching Credential, I continued private study under Joel Mankey, and was also able to take annual trips with my students to Hawaii for study under taiko master Kenny Endo. The program was an incredible success and continues to gain widespread recognition under the direction of Blaine O'Brien.

    In 2011 I made the decision to relocate to Ulm, Germany to be close to my infant daughter. I sold all of my belongings from America and used the money to purchase a set of taiko. I arrived here with not much more than a dream of starting my own taiko dojo and the blessings of Kenny Endo Sensei  and Joel Mankey Sensei. After my first year I was teaching taiko at the Ulmer Volkshochschule, Anna-Essinger Gymnasium, and had started another high school taiko program at the International School of Ulm. In 2015 I took the leap to go self-employed and start my own school of American taiko here in Germany. With immense help from some incredible friends, namely my manager Renate Gerke, we have made my dream - Taiko Zentrum Deutschland - a reality. 

My Taiko Story

    I came to taiko in a rather roundabout way,..I have always been a musician. I began piano lessons with an amazing teacher and mentor - my mother - at the age of 4, and grew up surrounded with music and art (my father, another amazing person and mentor is also an incredible artist). At some point around 17, I decided I wanted to be a professional musician.

    I loved singing and composing and at 18 started a band, Agnes Poetry, with my brother and sister. We enjoyed almost immediate success which sent us on a roller-coaster ride of late night composing sessions, concert venues and recording studios over the next 9 years. At the same time I was also working as a retail business manager, & management trainer / recruiter. As touring activity with Agnes Poetry slowed down and a career in retail business management looked unavoidable, I made a drastic turn and decided to go to University to study my real passion: MUSIC!

    I spent three years at Pasadena City College studying composition and vocal arts under some of the finest musicians I have ever known. After graduating from PCC I continued my musical studies at California State University Northridge.  It was during this time that I heard about an intriguing musical discipline that combined physical fitness with music. I decided to see what the Taiko Drum course was all about.

    After my first class I was hooked. I was studying under a man who is now a very close friend and collaborator, Joel Mankey. I loved the combination of fitness and music as well as the tradition and the energy of taiko. Joel made it fun and interesting and challenging. In my second semester we were fortunate  to have Masato Baba - one of the finest taiko players around - doing a residency with us and I was able to study for the semester under his and Joel's instruction. I became very passionate about taiko and knew it was something I wanted to take further.

    I continued on to play with CSUN's performance group Jishin Taiko, and 2 years later upon graduation was offered a job at Crespi Carmelite High School as a music teacher. As part of my curriculum I suggested a taiko ensemble. The school loved the idea and in 2007 we started the first High School taiko program in America, Celt Taiko.

    The Celt Taiko program started with one class and 4 students, and when I left had grown to 4 classes and almost 50 students. It provided me with many incredible performance and learning opportunities. I was able to attend Loyola Marymount University and earn my Masters degree in Music Education and Teaching Credential, I continued private study under Joel Mankey, and was also able to take annual trips with my students to Hawaii for study under taiko master Kenny Endo. The program was an incredible success and continues to gain widespread recognition under the direction of Blaine O'Brien.

    In 2011 I made the decision to relocate to Ulm, Germany to be close to my infant daughter. I sold all of my belongings from America and used the money to purchase a set of taiko. I arrived here with not much more than a dream of starting my own taiko dojo and the blessings of Kenny Endo Sensei  and Joel Mankey Sensei. After my first year I was teaching taiko at the Ulmer Volkshochschule, Anna-Essinger Gymnasium, and had started another high school taiko program at the International School of Ulm. In 2015 I took the leap to go self-employed and start my own school of American taiko here in Germany. With immense help from some incredible friends, namely my manager Renate Gerke, we have made my dream - Taiko Zentrum Deutschland - a reality. 

My Taiko Story

    I came to taiko in a rather roundabout way,..I have always been a musician. I began piano lessons with an amazing teacher and mentor - my mother - at the age of 4, and grew up surrounded with music and art (my father, another amazing person and mentor is also an incredible artist). At some point around 17, I decided I wanted to be a professional musician.

    I loved singing and composing and at 18 started a band, Agnes Poetry, with my brother and sister. We enjoyed almost immediate success which sent us on a roller-coaster ride of late night composing sessions, concert venues and recording studios over the next 9 years. At the same time I was also working as a retail business manager, & management trainer / recruiter. As touring activity with Agnes Poetry slowed down and a career in retail business management looked unavoidable, I made a drastic turn and decided to go to University to study my real passion: MUSIC!

    I spent three years at Pasadena City College studying composition and vocal arts under some of the finest musicians I have ever known. After graduating from PCC I continued my musical studies at California State University Northridge.  It was during this time that I heard about an intriguing musical discipline that combined physical fitness with music. I decided to see what the Taiko Drum course was all about.

    After my first class I was hooked. I was studying under a man who is now a very close friend and collaborator, Joel Mankey. I loved the combination of fitness and music as well as the tradition and the energy of taiko. Joel made it fun and interesting and challenging. In my second semester we were fortunate  to have Masato Baba - one of the finest taiko players around - doing a residency with us and I was able to study for the semester under his and Joel's instruction. I became very passionate about taiko and knew it was something I wanted to take further.

    I continued on to play with CSUN's performance group Jishin Taiko, and 2 years later upon graduation was offered a job at Crespi Carmelite High School as a music teacher. As part of my curriculum I suggested a taiko ensemble. The school loved the idea and in 2007 we started the first High School taiko program in America, Celt Taiko.

    The Celt Taiko program started with one class and 4 students, and when I left had grown to 4 classes and almost 50 students. It provided me with many incredible performance and learning opportunities. I was able to attend Loyola Marymount University and earn my Masters degree in Music Education and Teaching Credential, I continued private study under Joel Mankey, and was also able to take annual trips with my students to Hawaii for study under taiko master Kenny Endo. The program was an incredible success and continues to gain widespread recognition under the direction of Blaine O'Brien.

    In 2011 I made the decision to relocate to Ulm, Germany to be close to my infant daughter. I sold all of my belongings from America and used the money to purchase a set of taiko. I arrived here with not much more than a dream of starting my own taiko dojo and the blessings of Kenny Endo Sensei  and Joel Mankey Sensei. After my first year I was teaching taiko at the Ulmer Volkshochschule, Anna-Essinger Gymnasium, and had started another high school taiko program at the International School of Ulm. In 2015 I took the leap to go self-employed and start my own school of American taiko here in Germany. With immense help from some incredible friends, namely my manager Renate Gerke, we have made my dream - Taiko Zentrum Deutschland - a reality. 

bio pic

Credentials

Masters Degree / Diplom
Education:
Loyola Marymount University, Los Angeles, CA

California State Teaching Credential
Music:
Loyola Marymount University. Los Angeles California

Bachelors Degree / Diplom
Vocal Arts / Klassiche Stimme
Composition / Komponieren
California State University Northridge

Associate of Arts Degree / Diplom
Voice / Stimme
Composition / Komponieren

8 Years teaching experience as Music and Taiko teacher from 1st grade - 12th grade

8 Jahre Erfahrung als Music & Taiko Lehrer von 1 bis 12 Klasse

Credentials

Masters Degree / Diplom
Education:
Loyola Marymount University, Los Angeles, CA

California State Teaching Credential
Music:
Loyola Marymount University. Los Angeles California

Bachelors Degree / Diplom
Vocal Arts / Klassiche Stimme
Composition / Komponieren
California State University Northridge

Associate of Arts Degree / Diplom
Voice / Stimme
Composition / Komponieren

8 Years teaching experience as Music and Taiko teacher from 1st grade - 12th grade

8 Jahre Erfahrung als Music & Taiko Lehrer von 1 bis 12 Klasse

Credentials

Masters Degree / Diplom
Education:
Loyola Marymount University, Los Angeles, CA

California State Teaching Credential
Music:
Loyola Marymount University. Los Angeles California

Bachelors Degree / Diplom
Vocal Arts / Klassiche Stimme
Composition / Komponieren
California State University Northridge

Associate of Arts Degree / Diplom
Voice / Stimme
Composition / Komponieren

8 Years teaching experience as Music and Taiko teacher from 1st grade - 12th grade

8 Jahre Erfahrung als Music & Taiko Lehrer von 1 bis 12 Klasse