It is with great regret that given the current and on-going pandemic, the ESS has come to the difficult decision to postpone the ESS Dublin 2020 Summer School. Our primary concern is always the health and safety of all our members but we would like to apologise for the inconvenience that this will inevitably cause.

We are in discussion with the venue hosts and transport providers and hope to be able to provide information on the terms and process of refunds of the registration and accommodation fees shortly. We are planning to reschedule the event to the same venue and with similar dates in July 2021 and hope to invite the same teachers subject to their availability and the budget. Further details will be posted on the Dublin 2020 and the ESS websites.

We will be in touch with you again shortly but please do ask if you have any questions regarding this. Thank you so much for your understanding and support. Please keep in touch. Keep safe and healthy and I hope to see you in 2021.

About the ESS Dublin 2021 Summer School

Dates: 2021

Venue: University College Dublin (UCD), Ireland


Saturday: Gala Concert

This concert will take place at St Ann’s Church, Dawson Street in the city centre. The venue has a history of Japanese music concerts, thanks to its resident organist and musical director, Charlie Marshall, who is also one of the finest performers of the Japanese biwa outside of Japan and a shakuhachi player. The concert will feature many of the teachers and some musicians of Irish traditional music.

Tickets are 15 euros (+administration fee) and are available from Eventbrite. Please note that participants of the summer school have free admission.

St Ann's Church

St Ann’s Church


Participants will have the opportunity to encounter lineages including Kinko, Tozan, Zensabo, KSK and Jin Nyodo lineage as well as a wide range of genres such as honkyoku, sankyoku, shinkyoku, contemporary and min’yō.

There will be limited places available on the ji-nashi shakuhachi making workshop led by José Seizan Vargas and Thomas Goulpeau during the first two days of the summer school. Please tick the box on the registration form to secure your place. Places will be allocated on a first come, first served basis.

A particular focus of this summer school will be an introduction to the deep heritage of Irish music. There will be classes in playing Irish music on shakuhachi as well as Irish instruments being featured in the concerts. We will also organise some evening entertainment which may involve tasting the famous black beverage, known locally as the ’Pint of Plain’.

There will be a dedicated space for participants to spend time in guided meditation and suizen.

Koto and shamisen will also be part of the program with professional players accompanying sankyoku and shinkyoku classes and performing in concerts.


Jin Rei

Jin Rei

This year we will have three special guests: Jin Rei, the grandson of Jin Nyodo, Yamaoka Yozan, a leading player and teacher from Brazil and Mizuno Kohmei, the Head of the Kinko-ryu Chikumeisha guild.

Akio Yamaska

Yamaoka Yozan


Mizuno Kohmei

Other teachers and performers will include: Kiku Day, Horacio Curti, David and Gina Barnes, Jean-François Lagrost, Michael Soumei Coxall, José Seizan Vargas, Thomas Goulpeau, Philip Suimei Horan, Keiko Kitamura and Gaho Takahashi.


In general, teaching will be offered at four levels:  beginners, elementary, intermediate and advanced.  For those who have never played the shakuhachi before and who want to discover this amazing instrument, there will also be a 4-day beginners’ course taught by experienced professional players. Shakuhachi will be available to borrow or buy.