January 16, 2016 1:00 pm

Lawai International Center

Shakuhachi  Grandmaster Riley Lee returns to Lawai International Center to offer a rare and unique opportunity: two concerts of shakuhachi, the ancient ceremonial Japanese flute, in a hand-carved structure true to 13th-century Japanese temple architecture. The one hour performances at Lawai International Center’s Hall of Compassion will take place at 1:00 p.m and with another at 3:00pm on January 16, 2016.

The event marks the first time in 1,500 years that the public will witness such a performance. In Japan, the public is not allowed in traditional ceremonial structures such as Lawai’s Hall of Compassion, an all-yellow cedar meditation hall built by volunteers according to the structures of 13th-century temple traditions. Asian masters of temple architecture and volunteers from Kaua‘i built the Hall of Compassion with their sincere effort, heartfelt aloha, and skilled hands.

Riley Lee, a longtime supporter of Lawai International Center, achieved his Grandmaster designation after years of rigorous training. To attain this rank 35 years ago, he practiced barefoot in the snow, blew his flute while standing under a waterfall, and played in blizzards until icicles formed at the tip of his flute. The recipient of a Na Hoku Hanohano award, he remains one of the few such masters outside of Japan. He has performed extensively throughout the United States, Europe and Asia, including at the Sydney Opera House and Kennedy Center in Washington D.C., and he has released more that 60 recordings on international labels.

Lawai International Center is a nonprofit, nondenominational community project driven by its volunteers, whose earnest efforts are bringing the valley back to prominence as an international center of compassion, education, and cultural understanding. With its 88 hillside shrines built by the immigrants of Kaua‘i, the Center is a treasure of the state and a sanctuary for the world.

There will be a reception an hour before each concert with shakuhachi students and volunteers who have worked on the Hall of Compassion.

Due to a limit of 25 seats per session, reservations are required.

The suggested minimum donation is $125