The group


The Japanese drums group NIKA TAIKO was born in Paris in 2015,
created by Annabelle Liberge and Diana Cavalieri.

Both coming from artistic, musical and scenic backgrounds, Annabelle and Diana met at Wadaiko MAKOTO’s association, where they were taught by Mariko Kubota-Sallandre the traditional practice of wadaiko.

A few years later, a common desire for creation and openness, encouraged them to practice wadaiko on their own, cherishing the values they had been transmitted.

Today they revisit taiko’s traditional music, mixing it to more contemporary rhythms, resulting in Nika Taiko’s unique groove. They share their passion for taiko drums whether on stage during private and public performances, or collaborating with other dancers, musicians and visual artists…

Over the years, the repertoire grows, the style evolves and the group expands: each new member enriches NIKA TAIKO with its special color and energy.

The members


Annabelle Liberge

Annabelle Liberge

Founder & artistic director

Trained at the Conservatory in Le Havre, Annabelle Liberge studied and composed piano since her childhood. Later, she left Normandy to study digital creation at the Gobelins School in Paris.

Cultural discoveries during trips abroad pushed her to put music back in the foreground. The revelation took place in 2009 in Paris, during a concert of the group Kodō, which she attended on her return from Japan.

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Touched to the core by the power and finesse of the sound of Japanese drums, their vibration, the precision and beauty of the movements, Annabelle joined the wadaiko school of Mariko Kubota-Sallandre.

She then discovered the demands of this practice, a discipline close to martial arts and dance. The raw and sensitive relationship with the instrument taught her a lot about herself. This experience marked the beginning of a new personal and professional path.

Today, Annabelle continues her research, improvising and composing, beyond taiko, to make the audience and the artists experience intense emotions.

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Diana Cavalieri

Diana Cavalieri

Founder & artistic director

Born in Rome, she began classical dance at the age of 4 and completed her training in jazz and contemporary dance.

She discovered Etienne Decroux’s Dramatic Corporal Mime at the age of 20 during an intensive summer workshop and moved to Paris to train in this technique at the International  School of Mime Marcel Marceau and at the Ateliers de Belleville under the direction of Ivan Bacciocchi.

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Fascinated by the arts of movement and the crossing of styles and artistic universes, she took part in various productions in physical theater, dance and circus.

She discovered wadaiko with Mariko Kubota-Sallandre in 2006 and found in this art, an infinite source of presence and freedom. The body becomes the instrument, the gesture frees the sound.

The elegance and precision of the movements, the richness of the rhythms and the depth of the sound of the Japanese drum, have since become the center of her artistic research.

Rich of the experience of several taiko groups, she founded NIKA TAIKO in 2015 with Annabelle Liberge.

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Crystel Zrnjevic

Crystel Zrnjevic

Wadaiko player

Coming from the world of martial arts, fencing and judo in particular, she discovered wadaiko during a trip to Japan in 2009. It was love at first sight!

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Her passion led her to perfect the Oedo Sukeroku style, and to work as well on nagado, on shime as on odaiko drums. She loves the total commitment of body and mind that this unique art requires, its power and subtlety, its depth and delicacy.

Having a taste for sharing, meeting people and creating, she also works in collaboration with many musicians and artists from different universes and continues her training with Khalid Kouhen, a renowned percussionist and master of Indian tablas.

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Franck Glowacz

Franck Glowacz

Wadaiko player & singer

Curious by nature, he first trained in theater and then in singing: Lyrical, Jazz, Pop.  He starts taiko in 2010 touched by its energy, its vibrations and the technical requirements.

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Trained in taiko by Mariko Kubota-Sallandre for 8 years, he also opens up to other professionals thanks to intensive training courses in Japan and England, as well as on stage at 3 “European Taiko Conferences” and the 2nd “European Taiko Concert”.

Practicing Shiatsu and appreciating the beautiful gesture in Aikido, he integrates these influences for a better understanding and practice of wadaiko and a more accurate interpretation.

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Sarah Dhaine

Sarah Dhaine

Wadaiko player

Sarah Dhaine has been practicing ballet since her childhood and teaching it since 2014. She also trained in mime, entering the International School of Dramatic Corporal Mime in 2008.

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Working the body through movement and rhythm is what drives her. She is curious and always in search of new sensations.

In 2012, her interest in live performance and visual arts pushes her to join the Japanese percussion group Paris Taiko Ensemble with whom she learns the art of wadaiko and participates in various events.

She joined the group NIKA TAIKO in 2021.

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