Admission Guidance

Guidancefor admission

The Honjoh School is the center for Honjoh Hidetaro, the head of the shamisen Honjoh School, which aims to create friendships between the members. The school was established for the purpose of training the mind and body through the diffusion and development of Japanese music (Risogaku).
If you enter a private school, you can become a Honjoh School member and can participate in exhibition events everywhere in Japan as well as various mainstream-sponsored events.

About exercise

Exercise (keiko) consists of two Japanese kanji characters, kei and ko. It is said that "kei" is "thought" and "ko," meaning "old," stands for a style handed down from the past. A pupil must consider what a teacher presents and should "imitate" what a teacher shows to him. His creative world can begin from that point for the first time. Creation is born from repetition of imitation.
Practice should come from form and rules first of all. It can form a "way" by protecting accepted etiquette. This means protecting a "type" and a culture. Ancient Japanese culture emits light like a crystal into a "type." Students who stand firm on what is "unchanging" and is called tradition will seek to create what is new across the ages. Japanese people enjoy creative work and courtesy will form in them. However, I believe that there is no future and no creativity without the past. I wish to take aim at shamisen music as a rich musical culture. The "shape" and "type" of the Honjoh School rests on that.

Concept of the Honjoh School

The Honjoh school defines "Risogaku" as its own style of music, and studies Japanese musical classics (folk song, short love song, etc.) to diffuse and develop Risogaku. Creating new Risogaku is exactly the manner of making new music using an old form as a model. I want to create circumstances in which a "Shamisen" wants to sing a song of its own accord.

Contents of Honjoh school course

Risogaku: the new genre of shamisen music with the style of music of the Honjoh School.
Folk song: Pupils can study not only melody, but learn about nature and the culture of their homeland.
Hauta (Short love song): Since the music of various times is included, various kinds of music can be studied.
* Training organizations, such as the scholarship society and the Pine or Camellia groups, are open to pupils who excel, especially in the arts.

Honjoh School Content of activities

Honjoh School Tokyo public performances

Every five years we have our own concert in the Great Hall of the National Theater in Tokyo to present our leadership. For anyone who aspires to perform Japanese music, the National Theater is the utmost place to appear. Leading Honjoh-ryu players can perform on that stage along with other first-class players, singers and dancers. They can enhance their performance skills on the basis of such great experiences.


In order to have an intensive course of study for a form of instruction that aims at creating friendship and artistic development, a classroom course in song, shamisen, and other musical instruments was opened. The curriculum is based on the most music possible to be mastered intensively.

Performance on Honjoh School shamisen :

Whether song or shamisen, many new folk songs, short love songs, standard folk songs, and Risogaku can be firmly mastered by a head lecturer's direct instruction.

Traditional performance on musical instruments :

Pupils study folk-song drumming (including classical performance) intensively.
This is useful for pragmatic performance.

Honjoh School / Honjoh-kai New Year Gathering

At the beginning of the year, the new Natori graduates (awarded a diploma) are announced (for performance of stylized music) and those people recognized for their contribution to Honjoh-kai's development are praised.

Run-through gathering

These are concerts that focus on the results of daily devotion to music. They are carried out in each district once a year.

Study gathering

Study gatherings are devoted to ethnic songs of Japan, and look into the results of studies by members of a Japan ethnic song succession and development association as a parent organization.

Scholarship society

The Honjoh School's newcomer training organization consists of members nominated by the head of the school for instruction from a Honjoh School or other professional player.

Pine group

This training organization consists of Honjoh School male players nominated by the head of the school in doing research and announcing activities for artistic improvement.

Camellia group

This training organization consists of Honjoh School female players nominated by the head of school in doing research and announcing activities for artistic improvement.

A word from the head master

During studies, in addition to mastering a singing style and performing on an instrument, it is very important to acquire the "heart of a song" as well as associated "courtesy" and "culture" through music between master and apprentice and colleagues.
I hope that everyone could foster a "richness of heart" through shamisen music and in communicating by the Honjoh style with various people around the world. "Richness" means not to limit music to a narrow frame, but to make even a layman feel interested in it.

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