Japanese Cultural Classes in Continue in Moraga

Classes Are Well Attended, New Students Still Accepted

MORAGA, Calif. — Mar. 16. 2016. BDK America confirms the success of its classes in both the Japanese Way of Tea (Chado) and the Japanese Art of Flower Arranging (Ikebana). "Classes are well attended and the students really enjoy them," says Brian Nagata, Director of Programs. 

Both classes are designed to bring meaningul growth for beginning students, and students may join in easily into either class. 

Join at Any Time

"The good news is that there is still room in both classes, and students may join in at any time," Nagata said. Interested parties should call the instructors directly on class openings and availability, he said. Contact numbers for the teachers of each class appear below. "We started offering classes for the community and at first didn't know what to expect. But the greater Moraga community has been especially responsive."

The Japanese Way of Tea

BDK America is grateful for the good response to its classes for learining the Japanese Way of Tea under the guidance of expert instructor, Ms. Yufuko Kurioka. Kurioka Sensei is cofounder of the No Gate Tea School. Classes meet at the BDK America location in Moraga on most Wednesdays, from 10:30 am to 12 noon. 

Alternating Sessions

New students are welcome at any time and are easily integrated into the course. Kurioka Sensei will guide new students into the current theme of the classes, which usually change every six weeks. 

Fee per class: $20.00
Instructor: Yufuko Kurioka (co-founder, No Gate Tea)

Students who attend the class will, within 10 or 12 classes, will gain significant insights into the history, culture, refinement and tradition of the classic Japanese tea ceremony and how it can be incorporated into one’s contemporary enjoyment of preparing and drinking tea. Each weekly session will begin with a short presentation, followed by a demonstration of the Tea Ceremony. Then the participants will practice the Japanese Way of Tea under a guiding hand. Beautiful seasonal Japanese tea sweets and macha from Japan will be served.

Note: Tea utensils are strongly recommended. Students without utensils should budget about $100 for them.

About Kurioka Sensei and No Gate Tea

Kurioka Sensei teaches Japanese language at Diablo Valley College and has provided tea instruction throughout the greater Bay area. She is the co-founder of the No Gate Tea approach to Chado, created to present Chado in a highly accessible way that still provides the structure and respects the traditional approach to this cultural practice.

Kurioka Sensei was born in Osaka and was raised in the countryside. "I grew up watching my mother practicing the tea ceremony a couple days a week," she says. After college studies in Japanese history and the finer points of tea, she was invited to come to this country to teach Japanese culture and language. She has taught Japanese language and culture — and the Way of Tea — at many of the educational and cultural institutions around the Bay Area. Now with the cofounding of the No Gate Tea School, she brings the peace and calm of the tea ceremony has to a wider audience than ever before.

For More Information or to Register

For more information about the classes or to sign up, please contact Kurioka Sensei at 415-937-8260 or thenogatetea@gmail.com

Class Flyer 

Use the link below to download our initial announcement of classes. Dates shown are subject to change.

Class Flyer for the Japanese Way of Tea

Learn Ikebana — The Japanese Art of Flower Arranging

BDK America thanks the local community for the great response to its classes for the exquisite Japanese art of Ikebana, under the expert guidance of certified instructor Jane Suiei Naito of Ikebana Now.

Beginner Level Classes in Ikebana

Naito Sensei will offer beginner level classes in the Sogetsu School of Ikebana. Students will learn about the unique design principles of Sogetsu Ikebana, by creating their own arrangement in class and having it critiqued by Suiei Sensei. Students will learn about line, mass, dimension and asymmetry as well as techniques for successfully using a kenzan/pinfrog. Students will take home their arrangements to be recreated in their homes.

Students are welcome at any point and are easily integrated into the course.

Ikebana Flower Arrangement

Class Schedule: Second and Fourth Thursdays of the Month

Classes are held generally on the second and fourth Thursday of every month from 10 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. 

Fee Structure

   One-Time Fees

  • Enrollment Fee, $20
  • Textbook, $25.

   Tuition per Class

  • Includes branches and flowers, $30.


  • Beginner kits (container and kenzan/pin frog), $100.
  • Ikebana hasami (Japanese scissors/shears), $30.

About Suiei Sensei and Ikebana Now

Suiei Sensei is a certifiied teacher in the Sogetsu School of Ikebana. Through Ikebana Now she provides classes throughout the greater Bay area. She represented the San Francisco Branch of Ikebana International at the 2011 Bouquets to Arts floral exhibit at the de Young Museum and has exhibited at numerous Ikebana International, Sogetsu’s ArtScape Flower Shows and Fioli's Mother's Day Flower Show. She has served on the Board of San Francisco Bay Area Branch of Ikebana International and currently serves as Treasurer of the Sogetsu San Francisco Bay Area Branch and is on the Sogetsu ArtScape Flower Show committee.

For More Information

For more information about the classes or to sign up, please contact Suiei Sensei at 415-937-8260 or ikebana_now@icloud.com. She will advise on the best date to join the ongoing classes.

Class Flyer

Please use the link below to download our initial announcement of courses. Dates are subject to change.

Cllass Fyer for Ikebana — The Japanese Art of Flower Arranging