The class is typically split up into Phase 1 and Phase 2 groups with an instructor assigned to each. The class is conducted in a friendly and comfortable setting where the students are free to ask questions and seek advises from the instructor and participating advanced students. The 5 hours go by very quickly and yet the students reap significant knowledge of shakuhachi craftsmanship. We continue to have a flow of foreign students taking this class. The following is the voices of the past participants regarding our workshop. Please rest assured, English assistance will be provided with prior notice. So come and join us!!
A private one-on-one lesson can be also arranged for those who are unable to participate the monthly Saturday lesson. Please contact us to set up a date. (When taking one-day lesson, interior lacquring -tuning- work cannot be shown. As lacquering is a time taking process and there is no time to dry off, it will be explained to you.) You should also know it will usually take about 5--6 classes to complete one shakuhachi. One or two day lesson is not enough to finish a decent shakuhachi, unless you want a toy-ish flute which is unsuitable for playing. Also please make sure you contact us at least 4 weeks ahead to book this lesson. Shakuhachi making teacher has to travel here to teach you. It is not possible to arrange if your booking date is within 4-week-time. Please choose from one of the following:
See what people have to say about our workshop:
Mark from Taipei, Taiwan Participated in April 2007
"I recently attended the shakuhachi making workshop at Mejiro in Tokyo. I'm am basically a beginner and I was glad to find out that the workshop is suitable to all levels of making. I brought a piece that I had started and wanted to install a mouthpiece on. Shirato-sensei led me through it step by step, very patiently checking my work and advising how to make adjustments - and even picking up a file and correcting it when I couldn't quite get it right!!! And of course, an additional bonus was being able to play some top notch shakuhachi made by not only sensei himself but other famous makers such as John Neptune. Thanks for everything, it was a very worthwhile experience and I'm looking forwad to attending another workshop in the future. Regards, Mark"
Tom from NY, USA Participated in June 2006
"I had a GREAT experience at the Mejiro flute making workshop! Saori-san and Shirato-sensei were very helpful and accommodating with the whole experience. I don't speak Japanese, but this didn't seem to be a hindrance. The flute making process is primarily a visual one, and Shirato-sensei was patient to show me step by step what to do. For the few things where I had questions, Saori-san was there to translate and offer explanation. I recommend this class to any one who wants to broaden their knowledge of shakuhachi and learn the flute from the ground up. I can't wait to go back!"
Andrew from Australia, Participated a 2-day workshop in June 2005
"Your communication with me via email was excellent. Initially, I worried that a one or two day private workshop might not be long enough to complete a shakuhachi, but all my concerns and questions were answered prior to my attendance. As it turned out, my shakuhachi was pretty much finished by the end of the first day, leaving some final sanding for overnight homework and the second day for beginning the lacquering process.
My workshop experience was most satisfying. Asami-sensei was very helpful and patient. The shakuhachi, being made in two parts, lends itself to a demonstration by the instructor on one half and a repeat of the technique by the student on the other half. The inability to communicate with Asami-sensei via a common language (me being a non-Japanese speaking westerner) need not be a problem. The construction process is essentially a visual one - do as I do, so spoken communication was often not necessary. However, Saori-san, I found your interpretation skills essential for understanding the finer details behind particular techniques and the reasons for doing things the way they were done - many thanks. I think I would have been somewhat frustrated if there had not been anyone to translate my questions, particularly when it came to explaining the lacquering process. So although it would have been possible to get by without an interpreter, having an interpreter added immeasurably to the quality of the experience
As a short-timer, it was good to know that I did not have to bring a load of equipment from Australia. Almost everything was provided. All I needed to bring was myself, an apron or old clothes, a notebook and pencil (and a camera)!"
Eric from South Carolina, USA. Participated in Oct. 2004.
"With the friendly help of Saori-san, the language barrier was no problem. My Japanese language skills are limited to, "Do you speak English? and Where's the bathroom?", but I was very comfortable in both my shakuhachi playing lesson and my instrument building session. As a first time shakuhachi player, I was a little concerned about the success of my visit, but in addition to Saori-san's great translation skills, everyone there was very friendly and made me feel at ease. After I returned home to South Carolina, the video tape I got was a tremendous help in refreshing my memory. I'm not ready to quit my day job, yet, but someday... The day I spent in Mejiro was well worth the typhoon that I had to travel through that day! "Domo arigato gozaimasu!" to everyone at Mejiro!