James Nyoraku Schlefer

Technical Development

The Practical Shakuhachi is a new book of practice etudes and exercises for shakuhachi. Written in Kinko notation, The Practical Shakuhachi offers 90 pages of music to help improve your playing. It is a companion to James Nyoraku Schlefer's earlier Shakuhachi Workbook and presents new technical challenges, including long tone exercises, meri practice, intervals for embouchure development, intonation practice, and a section for practicing Western scales and arpeggios.

90 pages. PG-18


James Nyoraku Schlefer is a leading performer and teacher of shakuhachi in New York City. He received the Dai-Shi-Han or Grand Master's Certificate in 2001, and in 2007, he received a second shi-han license, this one from Yoshio Kurahashi and the Mujuan Dojo in Kyoto. In Japan he has worked with Aoki Reibo, Yokoyama Katsuya, Yoshinobu Taniguchi, and Mitsuhashi Kifu. His primary teacher in New York was Ronnie Nyogetsu Seldin. Schlefer holds a Master's degree in Western flute & musicology from Queens College (CUNY) and currently teaches music history courses at the City University of New York. He has four solo recordings, Wind Heart (which traveled 120,000,000 miles aboard the Space Station MIR) Solstice Spirit (1998,) Flare Up (2002,) and In The Moment (2008.) His music has been featured on NPR's All Things Considered.

Nyoraku is a member of the Japanese music group Ensemble East, which performs traditional and modern chamber music for Japanese instruments, including the shamisen and the koto. He is currently the curator of Japanese music programming for Arts at Tenri, a monthly chamber music series in New York City.

Schlefer began his musical career as a Western flutist. For the past several years he has turned his attention to creating new music and to date has written numerous pieces for shakuhachi in combination with both Japanese and Western instruments. A dedicated and respected teacher, Nyoraku Sensei is head of the Kyo-Shin-An teaching studio in New York City. He has edited books of traditional notation and written and published two etude books for shakuhachi technical development.

Learn more about James Nyoraku Schlefer

SHAKUHACHI WORKBOOK: Daily Practice Exercises for Technical Development

THE PRACTICAL SHAKUHACHI: Etudes for Technical Development

SHAKUHACHI DUETS: Ten Original Compositions for Two Shakuhachi

Sheet Music of Original Compostions


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