Approach to Teaching
Lauren has taught music in the classroom, privately, and in small groups for 25 years. She is devoted to teaching and sharing the shakuhachi with others. Because the shakuhachi is both a spiritual and a musical endeavor, she addresses both elements in her lessons. Lauren is available for shakuhachi concerts, lectures and presentations for both scholastic and general audiences. Lauren also performs and speaks at meditation retreats and spiritual centers focusing particularly on the spiritual dimension of Suizen.
PRESENTATIONS INCLUDE:• Live performance
• The History of the Shakuachi
• The shakuhachi's deep relationship to Buddhism
• The instrument's playing methods and performance practices
• Qualities of honkyoku
• The shakuhachi's expression of Japanese aesthetics
• The organology of the flute
Lessons — in person and through Skype
Lauren adjusts her teaching style to assist both complete beginners with no musical experience and advanced musicians who seek to learn the shakuhachi. Her advanced Western musical training and teaching combined with her long time studies of Eastern mediation allow her to speak on theory and technique while keeping a strong focus on the spiritual and meditational elements of the instrument. Lauren teaches honkyoku on jinashi shakuhachi, with special focus on chôkan shakuhachi.
Although she stresses the musical side of the shakuhachi, including technique, intonation, and phrasing, she equally emphasizes the spiritual element of blowing Zen. Great focus is placed upon the importance and method of proper breath control and technique. For those who are interested, she also teaches circular breathing on wind instruments.
Lauren studies with Alcvin Ryuzen Ramos. Her fundamental lineages are Myoan/Watazumi-do honkyoku via Atsuya Okuda-Sensei and Katsuya Yokoyama.
Lauren teaches in person in Los Angeles. She also offers shakuhachi lessons through Skype for those who live in other locations. All lessons are $45 for one hour. Students learn in the Japanese style, sitting in meditative posture (if possible).