What is “Utajuku”?

Content of learningFree trial/tourAdmission, lecture reservation

Learn the basics of waka poetry and try reciting it!

Is it difficult to compose waka? My answer is clearly "no."
If you look at the Manyoshu, it is obvious that everyone composes poems, regardless of age, gender, status, or status, and in the era when the majority of poets were aristocrats, most of them wrote poems. This simply means that anyone can compose waka.

Our belief that waka is ``difficult'' or that waka is ``unable to compose'' is a strong belief, and this stems simply from the perception that ``old languages are difficult.'' The modern classical education that has been instilled in us is extremely sinful).
However, as you will see when you actually compose waka, it is not that difficult to master ``classical grammar''. What's more, there is a technique that can surprisingly easily make the techniques of ``rhetoric,'' ``meter,'' and ``taste,'' which can be said to be inherently difficult, to be your own, and that is ``kata.''

When you hear the word ``kata,'' you may think of performing arts such as the tea ceremony or Noh, but in reality, Japanese culture as a whole is a ``culture of forms.'' It is the result of diligently following established rules, training repeatedly, and passing it down. This is the same with waka, the source of Japanese culture, and waka also has a clear pattern. In other words, anyone can compose a song if they master the ``form'', and it is precisely because the Heian aristocrats knew this ``form'' that anyone could compose a poem. It means that you cannot compose the correct ``Waka'' without a ``Kata'').

At ``Utajuku,'' our goal is to acquire this ``form of waka.'' We will concentrate on learning the basics of how to compose poems using the ``Kokin Wakashu,'' which is the holy book of classical Japanese poetry, as well as the Yatsushiro anthology. Furthermore, those who wish to participate will be asked to submit their own poems to the monthly "Utakai". We receive feedback from teachers as well as others, and have them improve their singing through practice (there is no other place like this where you can comprehensively learn and practice waka).

Furthermore, waka is, so to speak, the ``foundation of Japanese culture.'' We Japanese are naturally influenced by waka, not only in literature such as ``The Tale of Genji,'' but also in narrowly defined Japanese culture such as calligraphy, painting, and performing arts, as well as our sense of the seasons and our view of love in our daily lives. Therefore, learning waka poetry is simply ``learning Japanese culture.'' Even if you don't sing waka, if you want to learn about Japanese culture and knowledge, please take advantage of this poetry school.

Come on, everyone, let's learn the ``forms'' of classical waka and compose waka at ``Utajuku''! And please carve your name into the history of poetry.

*At the singing schoolFor compiling a collection of poems,For the time being, I will concentrate on learning ``love songs''. Professor Fittrell Aaron, a lecturer in Japanese classical literature at Waseda University, also participates in this poetry school. Please come and learn from Mr. Fittrell the knowledge, education, and love of Japanese poetry that I lack (the teacher may not be participating).

(Song monk Engaku Uchida)

→“What is the meaning of composing waka in modern times?

A word from the lecturer

The most important thing in learning, not just waka, is to have fun. Even if you're interested in something, if you don't enjoy it, it won't last long. Utajuku lectures are not just a one-sided talk from the lecturer, but are an opportunity for communication to deepen understanding and awareness through conversation with the participants. We use simple language that even beginners can understand, and we are always happy to answer any questions you may have.
Our aim is for each lecture itself to be a place to put ``Elegance'' into practice. Please feel free to join us.

At the Reiwa Poetry Center, we aim to inherit ancient waka poetry and compile a collection of poems suitable for the Reiwa era. If you have a desire not only to compose waka poems, but also to pass on the history of waka poetry, please join the Akane Poetry Society, whose purpose is to discover contemporary waka poems.

→ 『``Akane Poetry Society'' composes, reviews, and passes on waka poems

Free trial/tourAdmission, lecture reservation

Content of learning

Anyone can join the singing school at any time. We have already gathered waka fans from various backgrounds, so there is no need to worry if you are a beginner.

*Currently, the number of participants is less than 20 people, and about half of them are participating in the real-time lecture (ZOOM). We have a cozy atmosphere with a small number of people, so please feel free to join us.Visitplease
*The content is by no means suitable for beginners, but even beginners can learn enough if they have a desire to compose songs.

■Contents of “Lectures (held online)” (twice a month)

[Date and time: 20:00 on the 2nd and 4th Thursday of every month (approximately 90 minutes) ]

  1. Learn the basics of the ``rhetoric'' and ideal ``eimiburi'' of classical waka by appreciating the ``four seasons'' ororiori songs and ``love'' songs carefully selected from the ``Kokin Wakashu'' and the Eighth Generation Collection.
  2. Together, we will think about how to walk in the path of poetry, such as the perspective of evaluating waka and the heart and attitude of composing waka, based on the ``poet essays'' written by great poets.
  3. We will interact with participants through Q&A sessions and the presentation of ``Oshika.''

■Contents of “Utakai (online & face-to-face)” (once a month)
*It is not mandatory, but please participate.

[ Date and time: 3rd Sunday of every month from 10am (approximately 90 minutes) ) ]

  1. You will compose your own original ``song'' according to a ``title'' determined in advance. At the singing session, the names of the singers will be hidden and we will ask for honest feedback from everyone.
  2. We have senior poets who have been familiar with singing for many years, so this is a unique opportunity to receive their valuable opinions and impressions. Please use it to create songs (works).
  3. The singing session will be held in a hybrid format of online and face-to-face. The meeting venue will be the Ichida Residence (a nationally registered tangible cultural property) in Ueno, Taito Ward. Immerse yourself in the world of waka at this quaint venue.

If you have become accustomed to composing poems, or if you feel a desire to pass on the art of poetry, please join us at the Akane Poetry Society, which aims to compile a collection of waka poems for the Reiwa era.

→ 『``Akane Poetry Society'' composes, reviews, and passes on waka poems

*"Utajuku" is held online. We will contact you with the ZOOM URL when you reserve the lecture.
*If you are unable to attend the ZOOM lecture, we will share the recorded video after the lecture, so you can study there as well.

→“Eikusa for all participants

Song titles and lecture schedule for the year

Lecture (digest) video

FAQ

  • Tuition fees will be paid two weeks after enrollment (membership registration), and will continue to be paid automatically every month until canceled (cancellation can be done at any time from the membership site).
  • If you are unable to attend the real-time lecture, you will be able to view a recording of the lecture. After each lecture, we will send you the lecture video address and materials via email. 
  • The content of the lectures held twice a month is different.
  • Even beginners can learn enough if they have the desire to compose songs.
  • Although the copyright of the songs you compose at the "Utajuku" is yours, we give you permission to publish them free of charge on this website and in our association's "Uta Collection." If you wish to refuse publication, please let us know in advance.

Tuition fee

2,800 yen (tax included)/month
*Only payment by credit card is supported.

Lecturer/facilitator

Poet monk Engaku Uchida (Shinshu monk)

Reiwa Kadokoro Yomin (Click here for details),draft poem(Utajuku Poetry Society), Kana calligraphy works (Kana graphics)

Free trial/tour

If you would like to have a free trial or tour of our singing school, please click the button below to proceed to the reservation/application page and contact us using the form.

School admission & lecture reservation

Step 1: Admission (member registration)

To reserve a lecture, you must be enrolled in the school (register as a member). First, please register as a member using the button below.

※ 『``Akane Poetry Society'' composes, reviews, and passes on waka poems” You can participate at the same time. If you are interested, please select ``Uta Juku'' & ``Akane Uta Kai'' under ``Member Plan.'' The cost will be 3,800 yen.

Click here for instructions on “enrolling (membership registration),” “lecture reservations,” and “withdrawal.”

Step 2: Lecture reservation

To reserve a lecture, please use the calendar below.

*For reservations for each course, be sure toLogin ” Please proceed with
*After making your reservation, you will receive a ZOOM meeting invitation via email.

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