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Choshi (Myoan Shinpo Ryu)

調子

This is a piece of genre Koten from the Myoan Shinpo Ryû School. Also Known As : Kyo Choshi, Choshi (Kyoto Meianji), Honshirabe (Shinpu Ryu), Honte Joshi (Shimpo Ryu).

History (Jin Nyodo):

Kyoto Myoan-ji: CHOSHI

1. About the title:

Please consult "Commonly Used Titles." This piece is also called Kyo-Choshi in the sense that it originated in Kyoto. However, traditionally it is the first piece learned by novices at Myoan-ji in Kyoto so that it also bears the "insider" (i.e., within the temple) titles Honshirabe and Honte-joshi. It is valued as a basic piece and is used for ceremonies and memorial services. The traditional format has been that when a large number of people have gathered for worship with music, this piece is played first in unison (renkan). Even now, at the major meetings for performing shakuhachi honkyoku at Myoan-ji in Kyoto, it is the common practice for all participants to join together playing this piece to match the reading of sutras.

When we talk about the tradition of Kyoto Myoan-ji, we actually mean the tradition of Myoan-ji prior to the Meiji Restoration, that is the Meian Shinpo-ryu tradition. The first half of this piece is identical with the entire piece Fudai-ji Choshi. As regards the relation between the two lineages, at present it is unclear whether one of them borrowed the piece from the other of whether the piece was passed down in a parallel manner in both schools from ancient times. Jin Nyodo received each of the kyoto Meian Shinpo-ryu pieces from Katsuura Shozan.

2. Structure of the piece:

The piece is in two sections: [Opening dan - Closing dan]. The first dan begins in a high range, gradually moves to a lower range and ends. Because this section is identical to the whole of Fudai-ji Choshi it has a complete Shirabe structure in and of itself. Therefore, the structure of the whole piece resembles the Shirabe and Sagariha in Nezasa-ha.

3. Special features of the piece:

Like Fudai-ji Choshi, it is played with Kusabi-buke. Please see the entry for that piece for an explanation of kusabi-buki. In general, pieces called Shirabe or Choshi are constructed to form a single, gently-rounded mountain. This piece is thus exceptional as a Choshi composition in that it has a two-part form. It follows that we may consider the possibility that a second dan was added to the originally independent piece Choshi to form a new piece. Although it has the cohesiveness of a single piece and has no specific maebiki quality, it is often used as a maebiki for the Koten-Sankyoku, especially Koku.

Choshi (Myoan Shinpo Ryu) appears on the following albums

AlbumShakuhachiKotoShamisen
Chikusei


Empty Bell, The David Duncavage

    This version of Choshi is one of several that comes from the Kyoto temple Meian-ji. Choshi means “To tune”. In playing this piece one searches the way to rest in the harmony of heaven and earth.


Fuke Shu Honkyoku; Kyotaku Nishimura Koku

Heart of Bamboo, The Ronnie Nyogetsu Reishin Seldin


Ichi Horacio Curti

    Basic melody, beginning. This honkyoku has one of the simplest structures and, perhaps for this reason, it is also one of the more complex pieces.

Ichion Jobutsu Matsumoto Kyozan

Jin Nyodo No Shakuhachi 05 Jin Nyodo

    Kyoto Myoan-ji: CHOSHI

    2-shaku 7-sun
    6 min. 7 sec.

    1. About the title:

    Please consult "Commonly Used Titles." This piece is also called Kyo-Choshi in the sense that it originated in Kyoto. However, traditionally it is the first piece learned by novices at Myoan-ji in Kyoto so that it also bears the "insider" (i.e., within the temple) titles Honshirabe and Honte-joshi. It is valued as a basic piece and is used for ceremonies and memorial services. The traditional format has been that when a large number of people have gathered for worship with music, this piece is played first in unison (renkan). Even now, at the major meetings for performing shakuhachi honkyoku at Myoan-ji in Kyoto, it is the common practice for all participants to join together playing this piece to match the reading of sutras.

    When we talk about the tradition of Kyoto Myoan-ji, we actually mean the tradition of Myoan-ji prior to the Meiji Restoration, that is the Meian Shinpo-ryu tradition. The first half of this piece is identical with the entire piece Fudai-ji Choshi. As regards the relation between the two lineages, at present it is unclear whether one of them borrowed the piece from the other of whether the piece was passed down in a parallel manner in both schools from ancient times. Jin Nyodo received each of the kyoto Meian Shinpo-ryu pieces from Katsuura Shozan.

    2. Structure of the piece:

    The piece is in two sections: [Opening dan - Closing dan]. The first dan begins in a high range, gradually moves to a lower range and ends. Because this section is identical to the whole of Fudai-ji Choshi it has a complete Shirabe structure in and of itself. Therefore, the structure of the whole piece resembles the Shirabe and Sagariha in Nezasa-ha.

    3. Special features of the piece:

    Like Fudai-ji Choshi, it is played with Kusabi-buke. Please see the entry for that piece for an explanation of kusabi-buki. In general, pieces called Shirabe or Choshi are constructed to form a single, gently-rounded mountain. This piece is thus exceptional as a Choshi composition in that it has a two-part form. It follows that we may consider the possibility that a second dan was added to the originally independent piece Choshi to form a new piece. Although it has the cohesiveness of a single piece and has no specific maebiki quality, it is often used as a maebiki for the Koten-Sankyoku, especially Koku.

Kyotaku Nishimura Koku

    A training song involking the image of the city of Kyoto.

Musical Instruments of Japan - 3


Souvenir of Japan - Shakuhachi Komusoh and Suizen


Sui Zen - Blowing Meditation on the Shakuhachi - 02 Ronnie Nyogetsu Reishin Seldin

    This is a Kyoto Meianji version of Choshi, played on a 1.8 length shakuhachi. There are several pieces called Choshi, which means "Unity of Heaven and Earth." In fact, there are so many pieces of this name, that choshi has become a generic name for a simple introductory piece to be played before other pieces. Within that temple, it was the first piece to be learned, called Bon Shirabe and Honte-joshi, to indicate that it was the "hon" (true, original) shirabe (introductory piece).

    It is in two parts. The first part is very similar to Fudai-Ji Choshi; the second parts of both pieces differ. Jin Nyodo learned both forms of choshi from shakuhachi player Katsuura Shozan. We don't know which piece is closest to the original, as they appear to have evolved in parallel form over the same length of time. Some people believe the original choshi was only the shared first section, which is in a typical shirabe format, and that the second parts (the ones that differ) were later additions. The first part can stand by itself as a complete choshi.

    All choshi pieces can either stand on their own, or serve as a shirabe, or warm-up introduction to another piece. These warm-ups help ensure that the flute, player, and audience become ready for what is to follow. Kyo Choshi also provides insight into the player's present state. Ideally, it should convey an alert and vigorous condition. In fact, the word "choshi" also means "state or condition," as in "choshi ikagadesuka?" "How's your health?" or "How are you now?"

    Kyo Choshi is considered appropriate for formal occasions and as a memorial piece. Today, it is the piece that is performed in unison (renkan) by large numbers of players at the annual shakuhachi performances at the Meianji temple in Kyoto. This piece is also sometimes played as a shirabe (warm-up) to Koku.

Take no Shirabe; Fuke Shu Honkyoku Yes


Zen Music with Ancient Shakuhachi - Disc 2 John Singer

    (Introduction) Choshi was originally used at Myoan-ji Temple in Kyoto for ceremonies and memorial services and is valued as a fundamental warm-up exercise. It is said that when playing this piece one searches for inner harmony and repose of the mind.


The International Shakuhachi Society - 2017