National

Online music college to open in Japan amid pandemic

Jiji

Composer and pianist Takashi Niigaki and others will launch an online music college on Aug. 8, with artists suspending music performances amid the novel coronavirus pandemic offering high-level and practical music education.

Shibuya Music College will allow beginners and aspiring professional musicians alike to take unlimited courses for ¥980 a month, with no admission fees required.

Pre-recorded video lessons on songwriting, composition, playing musical instruments and singing songs based on classical music, as well as on the history of music and its surrounding culture, will be available for access at any time through PCs and smartphones.

The college will offer the “asobu (play) school” for beginners and the “tsukuru (create) school” for those aiming to become music professionals.

Users will also be able to take real-time lessons and seminar classes with their favorite instructors for additional fees.

The college’s instructors include Niigaki, 49, president of the institute and known to have been a ghostwriter for a prominent composer, Kunihiro Nakamura, 34, who performs in male piano duo Kenban Danshi, and members of opera unit The Legend.

Shibuya Music College will initially be operated as a project of Company East, the management company for Niigaki. It will seek to obtain approval as an educational corporation in the future.

“I thought of things I can do on the internet as a musician amid the situation in which it is difficult for us to physically meet to offer performances and education,” Niigaki said, touching on the reason for establishing the online college.

“I want to teach the existence of many kinds of music and how to listen to them,” he said. “I want many people to become happy and live fulfilling lives through music.”

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