The Hermitage Artist Retreat is pleased to announce that Shakuhachi Grand Master Flutist James Nyoraku Schlefer and Playwright Carson Kreitzer will both share their work and talents at a beach event on Friday, January 29, beginning at 5:00 pm

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The Hermitage Artist Retreat is pleased to announce that Shakuhachi Grand Master Flutist James Nyoraku Schlefer and Playwright Carson Kreitzer will both share their work and talents at a beach event on Friday, January 29, beginning at 5:00 pm. Schlefer will play his much-acclaimed Shakuhachi. Kreitzer will read from her latest play-in-progress, Capital Crime, about income inequality in New York a century ago. The Hermitage is located at 6660 Manasota Key Road in Englewood. The event is free. Visitors need only bring their beach chairs and any refreshments they might like to enjoy. As always, the performance and reading will be followed by Mother Nature’s sunset at approximately 6:00 pm. This program may be moved indoors to the Palm House at 6630 Manasota Key Road, just south of the historic campus, down the shell path. As space is limited, reservations are required. If you plan on attending, please make a reservation by calling (941) 475-2098, ext 8 or email [email protected]. On the day of the event, please check our Facebook page or call the reservation line to confirm the location of the program. 

“This will be a very unique evening,” remarked Bruce E. Rodgers, executive director of the Hermitage. “To hear a Shakuharchi flutist is a rare event and having a Grand Master in the house is even rarer. Add to that an opportunity to hear about and experience a new play with Carson Kreitzer adds a whole other artistic experience. We are looking forward to a unique and exciting evening.”

James Nyoraku Schlefer is a Grand Master of the shakuhachi and one of only a handful of non-Japanese artists to have achieved this rank. He received the Dai-Shi-Han (Grand Master) certificate in 2001, and his second Shi-Han certificate in 2008, from the Mujuan Dojo in Kyoto. He has performed at Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center, the Kennedy Center, Tanglewood and BAM, as well as multiple venues across the country and in Japan, Indonesia, Brazil and Europe. He is considered by his colleagues to be one of most influential Western practitioners of this distinctive art form. In February 2014, gave him the accolade of “America’s finest Shakuhachi player”.

Presently, Schlefer is the Artistic Director of Kyo-Shin-An Arts and the curator for Japanese music at the Tenri Cultural Institute in NYC. He teaches shakuhachi at Columbia University, a broad spectrum of Western and World music courses at New York City Technical College (CUNY), and performs and lectures at colleges and universities throughout the United States. As a musician, Schlefer’s unique style draws upon his deep connections to Western classical and rock music, as well as traditional and modern styles of Japanese music. As a composer, he has written multiple chamber and orchestral works combining Japanese and Western instruments as well as numerous pieces solely for traditional Japanese instruments.

Carson Kreitzer is a 2015/16 McKnight Fellow in Playwriting at the Playwrights’ Center in Minneapolis, her third time receiving the honor. She is currently working with composer Matt Gould on a new musical, Lempicka, and writing a new play, Capital Crime!, for the Guthrie Theatre, where she was last year’s Dowling Annaghmakerrig fellow. Her plays include The Love Song of J. Robert Oppenheimer (Rosenthal New Play Prize, American Theatre Critics’ Steinberg New Play Citation, and Barrie Stavis Award; published in Smith and Kraus’ New Playwrights: Best Plays of 2004), SELF DEFENSE or death of some salesmen, 1:23, Flesh and the Desert, The Slow Drag (New York and London), Slither, Behind the Eye, and Lasso of Truth.  Her plays have been produced or developed by the Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park, the Public Theatre, The Royal Court Theatre, the Guthrie Theater, Portland Center Stage, Clubbed Thumb, New Georges, Mabou Mines, and the Actors Gang, among others. Ms. Kreitzer is a member of the Workhaus Collective, an alumna of New Dramatists, and was the first Playwrights Of New York (PoNY) Fellow at the Lark Play Development Center. Her collection SELF DEFENSE and other plays is available from No Passport Press.

The Hermitage is a not-for-profit artist retreat located at 6660 Manasota Key Road in Englewood, FL. It invites accomplished painters, sculptors, writers, playwrights, poets, composers and other artists from all over the world for residencies on its beachfront historic campus. Artists are asked to contribute two services to the community during their stay and as a result, Hermitage artists touch thousands of Gulf Coast community residents with unique and inspiring programs each year. All Hermitage community programs are partially sponsored by the Women’s Exchange and the Florida Division of Cultural Affairs. In addition, the Hermitage awards and administers the prestigious Greenfield Prize, an annual $30,000 commission for a new work of art, rotating among three disciplines: visual art, music and drama. The Hermitage also partners with the Aspen Music Festival and School to award the annual Hermitage Prize to a composition student during the Festival. For more information about The Hermitage Artist Retreat, call 941-475-2098 or visit the website at

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