Reinventing folk instruments as educational tools: The case of the Shakuhachi

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Reflecting their dominance within music education, most musical instruments used in schools are of Western origin. In stark contrast, the adoption of folk instruments for the purposes of facilitating students’ music-making and learning in the educational context is rarely encountered. This article reports the empirical data of a study in which a modified, 3D-printed instrument in the form of a shakuhachi was tested based on its usability in a classroom setting and the degree to which students were motivated to learn it. The positive results make a case for child-friendly, affordable, educational instruments that facilitate easy sound production and pitch bending without compromising authenticity and expression. Developing such educational instruments can play a crucial role in invigorating and transmitting traditional music. Copyright © 2022 The Author(s).

Original languageEnglish
JournalResearch Studies in Music Education
Early online dateOct 2022
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - Oct 2022


Matsunobu, K. (2022). Reinventing folk instruments as educational tools: The case of the Shakuhachi. Research Studies in Music Education. Advance online publication. doi: 10.1177/1321103X221123272


  • 3D-printed musical instruments
  • Educational instruments
  • Hardware development in music education
  • Self-efficacy
  • The shakuhachi
  • Traditional music
  • Vertical flutes


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