Return to search


Performing at Walt Disney World as often as six times a day, seven days a week, the kumidaiko group Matsuriza has the unique opportunity to expose thousands of people per day to the world of Japanese taiko. Simultaneously, the group serves as an ambassador of sorts for Japan, representing the country within a section of the Epcot theme park known as World Showcase. Their performance space is the Japan pavilion, part of a modern day Worlds Fair that seeks to introduce tourists to various cultures from around the world.
Matsurizas participation in Disneys Worlds Fair is not without its consequences, however. The group must grapple with issues of commoditization, authenticity, and representation in Walt Disney World that have long caught the eyes of scholars. At the same time, the group must deal with the expectations of the tourists that have come to Epcot, expectations that are fueled in part by the atmosphere created by the Walt Disney Company.
Due to this confluence of issues, kumidaiko at Walt Disney World as performed by Matsuriza is a reified art form, static and unchanging. Taiko is discussed by group members using a discourse that adheres to the sense of Japan created within the pavilion, and repertoire and performance practice are modified so as to not disrupt the atmosphere that has been created. Even as kumidaiko continues to grow and evolve outside of Epcots borders, within the theme park it is simply another exhibit on display for the paying tourist in the museum of culture that is World Showcase.
Date04 June 2009
CreatorsPachter, Benjamin Jefferson
ContributorsBell Yung, Andrew Weintraub, Adriana Helbig
PublisherUniversity of Pittsburgh
Source SetsUniversity of Pittsburgh
Detected LanguageEnglish
Formatapplication/pdf, video/quicktime
Rightsunrestricted, I hereby certify that, if appropriate, I have obtained and attached hereto a written permission statement from the owner(s) of each third party copyrighted matter to be included in my thesis, dissertation, or project report, allowing distribution as specified below. I certify that the version I submitted is the same as that approved by my advisory committee. I hereby grant to University of Pittsburgh or its agents the non-exclusive license to archive and make accessible, under the conditions specified below, my thesis, dissertation, or project report in whole or in part in all forms of media, now or hereafter known. I retain all other ownership rights to the copyright of the thesis, dissertation or project report. I also retain the right to use in future works (such as articles or books) all or part of this thesis, dissertation, or project report.

Page generated in 0.0103 seconds