Shakuhachi Events with Ralph Samuelson March and April 2017!

A few event’s coming up. Read the entire blog!
Perry Yung Shakuhachi Image
Flutes of Hope
Friday, March 3, 2017 7:30 p.m.

Flutes of Hope, which debuted at the Cathedral of St. John the Divine in 2012, is an annual music program paying tribute to the resilience and compassion of the Japanese people following the devastating earthquake, tsunami, and nuclear reactor calamity of March 2011. Now commemorating the sixth anniversary of this unprecedented triple disaster, Flutes of Hope reaches out to the spirits of those lost and honors the selfless dedication of those rebuilding their communities.
This year’s program is inspired by the themes of the Cathedral’s Dignity Initiative and Christa Project and features poems written by earthquake survivors in Fukushima and neighboring regions.
Ralph Samuelson, shakuhachi
Steve Gorn, bansuri
Elizabeth Brown, shakuhachi and silver flute
Sylvain Leroux, fula flute
Eiko, recitation and dance
Karen Kandel, recitation
Contact (212) 316-7540 or visit for more information.
1047 Amsterdam Avenue (at 112th St)


Perry Yung Shakuhachi Image
With Ralph Samuelson and Yoko Hiraoka
April 8-9, 2017

Ralph and Yoko will again offer a weekend Japanese music workshop, the third in what is now an annual program.

The two-day workshop will take place once again at “The Barn”, the studio of Elizabeth Brown and Lothar Osterburg. This is located in the village of Red Hook, New York, about 15 minutes from the town of Rhinebeck and 1 hour 45 minutes north of Manhattan.

As in years past, the weekend will focus on ensemble music for shakuhachi with koto and shamisen, and on the playing style and repertoire of Kinko Ryu honkyoku.  Shakuhachi students at all levels are invited to participate.

The classical chamber music of Japan known as sankyoku is a music of rich beauty and depth. It is typically performed by three instruments—shamisen, koto, and shakuhachi—along with a vocal line set to poetic text. The many captivating aspects of this music include an elaborate interweaving of melodic lines, subtle and elegant ornamentations, and an emphasis on tone color. The workshop will explore these elements of the music and the manner in which the different parts of the ensemble come together while each expresses its own unique voice. Pieces in this repertoire were initially composed for shamisen or koto, with the shakuhachi part added later, and we will highlight the special qualities that shakuhachi brings to the music.

Kinko Ryu Honkyoku
The school of shakuhachi known as Kinko Ryu is named for Kurosawa Kinko (1710-1771), who was the lead shakuhachi teacher at the primary Fuke Sect temples in the capital of Edo.  The Kinko style and repertoire known today, however, were standardized later in the 19th century after players of the Kinko Ryu began performing sankyoku music. In this workshop we will explore the close relationship between the performance practice of honkyoku and sankyoku in Kinko Ryu.

2 Days of Music Study
[Note: selection of study pieces will be made after registration is completed.]
Saturday, April 8, 11 AM-5 PM
-Long tone practice and blowing
-Group session: sankyoku performance
-Lunch break
-Track 1: Group session, Kinko Ryu Honkyoku
-Track 2: Individual or small-group ensemble lessons with koto/shamisen
(Tracks 1 and 2 occur simultaneously.)
Evening dinner to be followed by open mic

Sunday, April 9, 9 AM- 4PM
-Long tone practice and blowing
-Group session: sankyoku performance
-Lunch break
-Continue Tracks 1 and 2

If you’re not driving, Amtrak service is available from New York City or Albany to Rhinecliff Station in Rhinebeck, NY; we will pick you up at Rhinecliff. If you are coming from New York on Saturday morning, please take the 8:15 AM train from Penn Station, arriving Rhinecliff at 10 AM.

Arrive Friday night if coming from afar, or travel on Saturday morning (we are starting at 11 to give you that option). For overnight accommodations, several choices are available including:

-outdoor camping on the grounds of “The Barn”—bring your tent (but it might be chilly)
-bring your mat and sleeping bag and sleep in The Barn (note: only one shower is available)
-there are a number of motels and B&Bs in the area

Registration and Workshop Fee
The two-day workshop fee is $300, plus a $25 surcharge for meals: $325 total.  Space is limited and early registration is recommended. Please register or request further information by emailing Ralph at (JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)

The Teachers
is a master performer of koto, shamisen, biwa, and jiuta vocal music.

RALPH SAMUELSON is a shakuhachi performer and teacher trained in the classical tradition of the Kinko Ryu under the tutelage of the late Living National Treasure Goro Yamaguchi and other leading teachers in Japan. He is based in the New York area and performs and teaches throughout the world.



Zen saying for Perry.