Japanese Music Institute of America
2580 Marin St.
Berkeley CA 94708
The founder and director of the Japanese Music Institute is Masayuki Koga who is considered to be one of Japan's finest shakuhachi masters. He received his master-teacher degree from the Tozan School in 1964. As a member of the award-winning Ensemble Nipponia, he made numerous appearances with the orchestra and recorded several albums for Columbia Records. As founder of the JMI, Koga-sensei's role encompasses the general direction of the Institute. He designs, develops and oversees all the JMI music programs as well as all publications and recordings sponsored by the Institute. Koga-sensei also selects and provides guidance for all other teachers and guest teachers in the JMI staff.
The Japanese Music Institute consists of a three-man Board of Directors and four officers. Organizational meetings are held annually to elect board members and coordinate activities. The JMI offers private shakuhachi lessons, private koto lessons, private and group music ensemble lessons, community performances and demonstrations. The Institute also sponsors a Japanese Master Musician Concert Series, inviting master artists from Japan to perform and teach.
Private lessons are taught by Koga-sensei or an assistant instructor by appointment at his home in Berkeley, California. The JMI has been participating in the Annual San Francisco Cherry Blossom Festival and the Palo Alto Obon Festival for over ten years. A student recital is held annually.
The JMI offers music recordings, teaching tapes, textbooks and sheet music as well as shakuhachi and koto instruments for sale to the general public.
"There is a secret to excel in playing the shakuhachi. Blow not intensively, but from your heart. Although technique is secondary, it helps to express your true self. If we are natural, we make fine sound. If we have an open mind, our sound will be mellow. If we have right attitudes toward life, our music will be acceptable to everyone. Take care of your sound as you would care for yourself." - Masayuki Koga
Learn more about Masayuki