Program Bio

Kristofer Bergstrom is a percussionist, composer, and choreographer, known for pushing the boundaries of Japanese drums and for his groundbreaking choreography for slant-style taiko.  After three and a half years studying traditional Japanese music and dance in Japan, Bergstrom was a founding member of On Ensemble, formed Los Angeles Taiko Institute alongside Yuta Kato, was Artist in Residence of the City of Los Angeles in 2018, Asano Taiko US in 2019, and Grand Vision Foundation in 2020.  Performing under the moniker, Arugakki, he and dancer Minh Nguyen released Harbor in early 2021 and are now focused on composition, research, and practice.


Personal message

I feel increasing pressure to work quickly.  The pandemic cut short a North American tour and cancelled all my teaching, and I went from balancing my energy between multiple responsibilities to a profoundly simple lifestyle of practice and composition.  I assume I will return to teaching at some point, and I hope to perform regularly again, but at the moment it feels like I need to keep my head down and study, play, and explore.  -- Kris


Promo photos (click image for high-resolution version)