News- Study at KyotoU

07 Apr 2017
  • Study at KyotoU

KIZUNA hosts kabuki music class (17 March 2017)

On 17 March, Student Lounge KIZUNA hosted a Japanese traditional kabuki music class. As with a similar and highly successful event held last October, instruction was provided by members of Kantakeno no Kai, who taught shamisen (three-stringed banjo) and nagauta (songs from kabuki) classes at the Kyoto International Community House and other venues.

In the recent class, participants first listened to the instructors' performance of nagauta "Echigo Jishi", and then attended a brief lecture. Next, they split into shamisen and nagauta groups, and took turns practicing the song "Sakura Sakura". Those who took part in last year's event performed an accompanying part, called kaete, which is slightly more difficult to play than the main melody.

During the break, a KIZUNA tutor who plays the sanshin (an Okinawan precursor to the shamisen) performed "Amazing Grace" and "Warabigami (A Child of God)" using her own instrument, and explained the differences between shamisen and sanshin, including the materials used to make them. She also discussed the history of the Ryukyu Kingdom, of which Okinawa was once a part, and characteristics of the local dialect.

The participants diligently worked on "Sakura Sakura" under the instructors' careful guidance, eventually learning to sing and perform the song together.

The event provided a great opportunity for all to experience a Japanese traditional performing art and to get to know each other.

Learning from the instructors

A KIZUNA tutor playing her sanshin

Performing "Sakura Sakura" together

Event participants