Besides the gakuso at the Court, other two institutes of gakuso , Nanto -gakuso (Nara) and Shitennoji-gakuso (Osaka) were established because at these two places the imported gagaku which preceded the Japanized gagaku had been accepted andpreserved. After this the tradition of gagaku were handed down to the beginning of the Meiji era (1870) by the performers who belonged to these three institutes of gakuso.

Although gagaku in Japan was remarkably successful in the Heian era, it was often in danger of extinction in its long history due to the changes of the governments and disorders of civil wars. In spite of so many crises, the performers of the three institutes of gakuso have maintained the traditions by their own sustained, earnest efforts.

When the capital moved to Tokyo in t1868 at the Meiji Restoration, the performers of the three institutes of gakuso were called to accompany the Emperor to Tokyo. Henceforth they belonged to Gagaku-kyoku (a section of the Imperial Household Agency), Known currently as the Kunaicho-gakubu. Meanwhile, losing their patrons and performaers, the other two institutes of gakuso were in a state of serious crisis. Fortunately they were revived thanks to the great civil efforts of the remaining performers of gakuso and the connoisseurs of gagaku. And the traditions of these institutes of gakuso have been inherited to the present day. The traditions of Shitennnoji have been preserved by our group, Garyokai.

( Makoto Ono, December 1997)

These are fundamental gagaku-instruments.

  (笙)     (篳篥)           (高麗笛と龍笛)