I am getting excited about RO camp coming up. I have been at the last three RO camps and all of them have been a blast. It is a totally ego free place where you can learn a lot about shakuhachi and create friendships that will extend far beyond the camps. The camps start off in the morning usually blowing RO for some time to warm up and then we get right into learning pieces. Sometime in the afternoon we have lunch and then its back to learning and playing. After dinner we usually have a recital of sorts and take turns playing individually in groups and as we wish. No one has to play during that time so it is just a stress free time to relax with new and old friends before calling it a night. When we call it a night we generally all sit around a table and tell stories and have a good time. Some of us drink and some of us play. It is pretty much just a good old free for all of fun. Rarely do you get to spend so much time immersed in shakuhachi with others who love the instrument as much as you do. If you have never been to one of these events I HIGHLY recommend them. Below is the tenative schedule. I will be there and I will blog from there too. I hope I get to meet some of you there.

•5th - 7th: Summer RO Camp (see also the extended stay option on June 8th)
9696 Harding Highway West
LaRue, OH 43332

We will be having our summer RO Camp at the home of Craig Ciola outside of Marion, Ohio again. Craig's place is a beautiful quiet country setting where we can play out in nature without bothering anyone (does shakuhachi really bother anyone?) and without us being disturbed by unwanted distractions. Craig has bamboo grooves, carp ponds, and a newly built amphitheater (’08)!

The study format is as usual:
◦Two Groups: Beginners & Intermediate/Advanced. Some time will be spent in one large group studying together but we also split up into two groups according to levels..
◦Study Songs:
1.One main Honkyoku:
Beginner’s: Sanya (Yama Tani or Mt. Valley)
Advanced: TBA (requests are taken now).
2.Two Fukuda Rando songs: Tabibito no Uta & Gekko Roteki.
3.Two (pure) Minyo songs: Mogamigawa Funauta & Mamuragawa Ondo.
4.SanKyoku: Yugao.
5.Modern: Emu, “Picture Dream”.
◦One Lecture Workshop Entitled: “The Nature of the Beast (shakuhachi): How to Study Accordingly in a Natural Way.”
◦Lodging: You may sleep indoors or outdoors at this camp (there are three extra bedrooms: first come first serve); or on the floor with mats and bags. Most people will sleep outdoors in tents. If you don't have one, Chikuzen has a 10 man tent bigger than most apartments and ample mats and bags.
◦Meals: All participants help out in the kitchen for at least one meal. Maybe cooking isn't your thing so cutting and washing may be! Students living within driving distance will share the job of choosing a menu with another student. Participants coming from afar will add $30 to the registration fee for food, but still help in the kitchen.
◦How Much: The registration fee is $200. (Recession fee: $50 off last year's price!) Add $30 for food if you are coming from afar. Camp booklet and CDs will be provided upon receipt of registration fee.
◦Contact: To register or get further information, contact Michael Chikuzen Gould.

•8th: RO Camp Plus
For those interested in having a longer camp, we have added an option for an extra day of camp on Monday, June 8. Addtional Fee: $100.

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