JAID - Japan Artists Information Directory

Elizabeth Bennett

Instrument/Discipline: Shakuhachi
School (流): Kinko-ryū
Ha/Kai (流派/会): Reibo-kai
Natori (名取り): Reian

Address: Boston area

Employment: Tufts University WEFT (World, Ethnic, Folk and Traditional) Program
Email 1:elizabethreian@hotmail.com (venues and presenters)
Email 2:reianfans@yahoo.com (prospective students, fans, and others)
Website: www.elizabethreianbennett.wordpress.com 

Additional information:

Elizabeth Reian Bennett is the first woman to play professionally as a Grand Master of the shakuhachi, the Japanese bamboo flute, and stands out as one of only a handful of western players trained in traditional Japanese music. She has studied and performed with Living National Treasure Aoki Reibo, recognized as Japan's foremost shakuhachi instrumentalist, for over 30 years.

Since her debut recital in Tokyo in 1984, Reian Bennett has performed frequently in Japan and worldwide, from Australia and Europe to Mexico, Afghanistan and the United States. Her most recent Tokyo appearances were in March of 2010; notable venues have included Tokyo National Theater and NHK (Japan National TV). She has been interviewed on radio by Faith Middleton of Fresh Air, Robert J. Lurtsema of Morning Pro Musica and Richard Knisely of Classical Performances. 

Her CD entitled Song of the True Hand, released in 2006, was nominated 'Instrumental Album of the Year' by Jon Sobel at Blogcritics Magazine. In describing it, Sobel wrote, “(it exemplifies)… the way a single individual with a musical instrument can wordlessly conjure the human spirit out of thin air.” Hartford Advocate critic Dan Barry compares her musical vocabulary to “…Coltrane in his prime”. Jay Keister, critic for The Journal of the Society for Asian Music, praises “Bennett’s impressive technique…Her skill with the instrument is clearly world-class.” Reian Bennett is now working on her next CD, Rhythm of the Waves. She teaches the shakuhachi through the world music program at Tufts University, and in the Boston area.