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  Kyrgyzstan » Kyrgyzstan » Culture » Music


MusicIn general, Kyrgyz folk instrumental music, as well as vocal one, is divided into two brunches. The first is the folk music itself, or so called mass instrumental folklore. The second brunch is the professional instrumental music of oral tradition. This dividing is conditional, but has a real foundation, as in Kyrgyz instrumental music along with mass folklore creative works, which decorate everyday life, there are a lot of highly artistic classical examples, created by outstanding professionals as concert genres.

Performing arsenal of Kyrgyz people can be divided into instruments that have an artistic function, applied and ritual purposes that combine both of functions. At the same time the borders between groups are very conventional. Already in ancient time some wind and percussion instruments have enlarge their functions from signal to artistic. Nowadays the instruments of applied and ritual type either vanished along with previous mode of life, or used in concert practice, for example, bell – "konguro" or ceremonial "musical staff"-"asa-musa". Childish "musical toys" (chopo cho’or) became solo and ensemble instruments.

All Kyrgyz musical instruments are classified into four main groups:

1. Stringed instruments – the source of sound is the tense string.

2. Wind instruments – the source of the sound is the column of air in the instrument.

3. Percussive instruments – the source of the sound is the tensed membrane.

4. Self – sounding instruments – the source of the sound is the instrument body.

Stringed instruments

Traditional stringed instruments of Kyrgyz people are Komuz and Kyl-Ky’yak. The difference between them is in the way of deriving the sound. Komuz is the pinch instrument, while Kyl-Ky’yak is the bow instrument. Playing Komuz, musician pinch or strike the strings forcing them to vibrate, playing Kyl-Ky-yak, musicians use a bow. Komuz – is most…

Wind instruments

Being the most ancient instruments, it has played an applied importance. Firstly it carried signal functions (calling up the people for some public actions or cattle moving to the pastures) and after artistic and aesthetic (rest, entertainment) functions. Long time ago the instruments of this group were included in war ensembles for the period of…

Percussive instruments

Kyrgyz folk percussive instruments create not numerous group. There are only three membranephones: Dobulbash (in the north of Kyrgyzstan – Dobulbas), Do’ol and Karsyldak. This instruments are carriers of rhythm, one of the strongest means of artistic influence on man and animals. In musical practice of 20th century, Kyrgyz percussive instruments were not used, and…

Self – sounding instruments

As known, self-sounding instruments (idiophones) are the instruments in which the source of oscillation is the body or its part, but not strings, membrane or air pressure. To such instruments in Kyrgyz musical culture concern so called lip (mouth) komuz of several kinds, tambourines, bells and the other instruments making cracking sounds. In this group…

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