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Taiko Summer Camp

Taiko Summer Camp

Back by popular demand!!!

JFG opens its third annual taiko camp, taught by Genbu Daiko Ensemble Master Instructor Noel Garcia.

This intense five day morning camp for middle school children is a great introduction to the world of taiko. Noel Garcia brings twenty years of professional taiko teaching experience to build his students into performance-level musicians. Regardless of prior experience, all participants will train to perform a full piece of music by the end of the week.

However, this feat will not happen on its own. This taiko summer camp requires hard work and full engagement from all participants. We are looking for serious students ready to follow teacher instructions, be accountable to their teammates, practice on her or his own outside camp hours, and come punctually and prepared every day of camp. You do not have to be a musician or have any particular skills to play taiko. Anyone can learn to play taiko! As long as they have a team oriented attitude and are willing to work hard for one week of camp, we highly encourage any middle school child to try out this incredible experience!

This unique taiko summer camp for children is the ONLY one of its kind in San Diego and provides a great value for a musical education program!!!


Class runs Monday, August 14th through Friday, August 18th from 9:00 am - 12:00 pm

Registration for JFG Members: $110 and registration for Non-Members: $130 for the week long camp.

Ages 10 - 13


“Thank you so much for all you do to help create this wonderful events for the students! [My child] is excited at the prospect of playing more. She really enjoyed camp and is looking forward to more time playing the drum” -- Barbary Mulvany

“The Taiko camp was especially exciting and I hope that the group will be able to continue. Noel Garcia was absolutely wonderful! He had a great way with the kids and made the art very creative, engaging and expressive. I hope you can pass the word on to the powers that be to continue the Taiko group there at the Gardens. It would be a wonderful addition to the museum.” –Arden Graupp


Noel’s teaching style not only teaches the mechanics of beating a drum. Campers will learn to appreciate and respect the art of taiko in its entirety. They will learn the Japanese etiquette, vocabulary, oral notations, and history of taiko. Students will learn basic compositional rhythms and have fun experimenting and progressing in a new skill every morning. They will take pride joining the legion of artists who thrive to the thundering beat of an ensemble.


It is well established that exercise and music contribute to building moral character, team players, and overall health and wellness. It encourages focus, relaxation, and release of stress. Taiko becomes the medium through which children can reach their highest potential through artistic expression. The JFG taiko summer camp instills the values of etiquette, respect, and teamwork and trains the children to become competent taiko players.


It is no coincidence that many summer camp alumni have continued to practice privately with Noel Garcia and still stay in touch with one another.  The intensive training and huge sense of accomplishment at the end has been a milestone experience for early participants in the program. The Japanese Friendship Garden has recently purchased taiko drums and endeavors to build a permanent youth taiko team, performing regionally and at major JFG events. Try one week of this camp to see if this is an after school extracurricular your child would like to continue. Join our pioneer team!


This program provides great value in price for the experience and artistic merit.


Earlier Event: August 4
Obon Festival
Later Event: August 17
18th Annual Gala and Dinner