Monday, January 18, 2010

Sometimes it's like pulling teeth...

I've been consumed with preparations for the upcoming Kumamoto Shakuhachi Festival.  In fact, it's safe to say that I had no idea it would be so consuming.  Most of the preparations I could conceive of, but there were some things that came up that I cound't. 
For example, I had to meet with a particular shakuhachi group today called the Nihon Shakuhachi Ren Mei.  They are a group of fairly old gentlemen who belond to the Tozan school.  Though the Tozan style is a relatively modern style of shakuhachi playing, their ideas didn't quite reflect that.
The problem with shakuahchi in Kumamoto and probably elsewhere in Japan is that it doesn't attract young learners.  Part of the problem is that most of the players are old, and though they might understand that the art needs young people to be involved, they don't see how to do it.  They think that to simply continue with what they've always done is what they should do, but don't see that such thinking is causing the death of this art form.
I, along with others, think that this festival will reach out to young people in a way that usual shakuhachi presentations don't and can't.  My difficulty is getting them to agree.  And without their agreement and support, success seems tenuous at best.
I continue.......our poster image.


  1. Hi, breath1,
    You seem to be facing a really difficult problem. It is true that not only Shakuhachi but also other Japanese traditions can hardly attract young people.

    I've heard that Japanese people sometimes don't want to agree that the good thing is good though they know it is good. So, they still prefer to keep on doing what they are doing regurally.

    Never give it up.

    By the way, I really do know the man standing behind two kids at the center of the picture!! It's really funny!

  2. Hello.
    It's a difficult problem.
    But you contribute to familiarize Shakuhachi I think.

  3. Hi, breath1.

    I was surprised that I watched your blog.
    Any people regardless of age or sex participates in this group!
    I thought that a shakuhachi was the musical instrument which seemed to be very difficult,
    but was surprised because there was the child.

  4. Hello.
    The death of that art form is very serious problem. I think young people don't care about tradition instrument in Japan. Me too...
    Your blog is good for advertisement of the Shakuhachi.

  5. Thanks everyone. I won't give up.
    Now off to the dentist!!

  6. I am really envious of you because you have a terrible special ability.
    I want some special ability...

  7. I can't image that young people play the shakuhachi.But I surprised there are kids and young people and foreigners.
    Japanese are not interests about Japanese culture.
    It is not good.

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