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Stereotypes about Russia: Drunk Bears with Balalaikas and Matryoshkas
The main stereotypes about Russians are eagerly replicated by the Western media and mainstream culture. They have long claimed Russia to be a land full of bears, snow, vodka, and drunk peasants with nesting dolls and balalaikas.
Bright Colours of Russian History at Folk Dance Show "Golden Ring" in Moscow
Russian folk show "Golden Ring" is the symbol of dedication to the authentic traditions of multinational Russia. The viewers will plunge into the history of Russia, various epochs and cultures of it.
Tula Harmonica Will Become a Tourist Brand
The authorities of the Tula region will support the Tula Harmonica Factory to enter the international market and attract tourists to the region.
History of Bell Founding in Russia, Part 2
At the end of the 19th century Russian bells won wide international acclaim. Products by Russian bell foundries were presented at numerous international exhibitions, and their owners took gold and silver prizes.
History of Bell Founding in Russia, Part 1
Since times immemorial bells and bell ringing have been an integral part of the Christian church service.
Russian Tradition of Semantron, aka Slavic Flat Bells, Part 2
The late 20th century saw the revival of ancient Russian tradition of playing the semantron (aka bilo). However, the centuries old music instrument was thoroughly studied, developed and perfected.
Russian Tradition of Semantron, aka Slavic Flat Bells, Part 1
Semantron (bilo in Russian) is one of the most ancient and simple but powerful music instruments. The resounding spellbinding voice of these ancient Slavic flat bells was known in Russia long before the coming of Christianity.
Pyzhatka, a Folk Flute
Pyzhatka is a single-pipe whistle flute traditional for the Kursk Region. This music instrument is a variety of the recorder.
Kalyuka (koluka) a Russian overtone flute - is one of the traditional folk Russian music instruments. It is a hollow tube lacking playing holes is played following the same principles as the overtone flute.
Gudok is an ancient Russian folk music instrument. In spite of its name (meaning hooter in Russian) it is a string instrument. Skomorokhi (wandering minstrel-cum-clowns) used it in a combination with the Gusli. Gudok consisted of an oval or pear-shaped dugout wooden case, a flat sounding board with resonator holes, and a short fingerboard without frets, with a straight or unbent head.
Garmon Russian Accordion
Russian Garmon (garmoshka) is a traditional reed music instrument with bellows and two push-button keyboards. The left keyboard is intended for accompaniment: by pressing a button one makes bass or an entire chord sound. The right keyboard is for playing the melody.
History of Guitar in Russia
The history of guitar in Russia is rich and original, with quite a complicated way of its development.
Vargan, the Russian Jews-harp
In the Stalinist epoch the vargan was banned as an adverse vestige of the past, in particular because of its close connection to shamanism. In spite of that, the older generations contrived to preserve the traditions of vargan playing and pass them on their children and grandchildren.
The origin of the word zhaleika remains unknown. Some researchers point to the similarity of the roots of zhaleika and zhalnik, the latter denoting a grave of an ancient Slavic man, and surmise the instrument could have been used at funeral repasts. The timbre of the zhaleika is piercing and nasal, sad and compassionate.
The kuvikly (kugikly) is the Russian variety if the many-piped flute, internationally known as the Pan-flute. The type of music instrument is widely spread in various parts of the world, with every people having its own name for it: in England they call it panpipes or pan-flute, sampogno in Latin America, nai or muscal in Moldavia and Romania, skuchudai in Lithuania, larchemi (soinari) in Georgia, etc.
Rozhok is an ancient Russian folk music wind instrument. According to 18th century descriptions, rozhok producing a very strong and shrill sound was used not only by shepherds at work, but also in taverns for entertainment and in boats to accompany oarsmens singing.
Svirel, Ancient Russian Pipe
Svirel is an old folk Russian wind instrument of the end-blown flute type. In the Old Rus this instrument was made either of hollow reed or cylindrical wood branches. A legend says that Lel, son of the Slavic goddess of love Lada was a svirel player. In spring he would make his svirel of birch branches.
Russian Traditional Music Instruments
As time passed by lots of new music instruments came to be used by folk musicians. Nowadays different styles are in fashion yet there is still hope that interest in traditional Russian music will never ever fade. Traditional folk music instruments have come to be used in lots of modern styles and eclectic ways in recent years.
Rattle Russian Treshyotka!
The folk music instrument treshyotka (translated as rattle) produces a variety of peculiar percussion sounds similar to hand clapping. This originally Russian instrument consisting of a number of wooden plates thread on a string was very popular and widely used in dances during wedding ceremonies.
Buben, or Russian Tambourine
From time immemorial Eastern Slavs have used bubens. These powerful instruments were most widely exploited by warriors and skomorokhs (wandering minstrel-cum-clowns). Back then all sorts of percussion instruments with drumheads were called buben.
Domra, a Lost-and-Found Music Instrument of Ancient Russia
Domra is a Russian folk music instrument with a rounded body and three or four strings played with a mediator. Domra is a prototype of the Russian balalaika. Records of domra can be found in ancient court chronicles and lubok pictures.
The history of Russian folklore and the history of gusli are inseparable. The major part of Russian folklore was performed to the accompaniment of gusli. This instrument used to be present whenever the folks gathered to sing, dance and listen to epic narrators or just beautiful and touching music.
Bayan, a Russian Folk Music Instrument
The bayan is one of the most perfect chromatic accordions existing nowadays. It is widely known abroad as button accordion, while buttons are not the only difference. As compared to the western accordion, the Russian bayan has a different tone colour and fuller sound and is great for dance melodies.
Today the Russian folk stringed musical instrument balalaika is going through hard times. There are not so many professional balalaika players left; country people have abandoned this once popular instrument. There have been ups and downs in the history of balalaika, yet it still lives and remains one of the symbols of Russian folk culture.
Spoons as Russian Folk Music Instrument
It is quite impossible to say now who and when hit upon the idea of turning ordinary tablespoons into a percussion instrument, yet the fact remains: they became the easiest, the most colourful and the most popular national instrument of the Russians. The painted wooden spoons are beloved in this country and abroad. Thousands of them are exported as two-in-one souvenirs, being period pieces and music instruments at once.
Russian Folk Music
The roots of Russian folk music date as far back as to the middle of the first millennium AC, when Slavic tribes settled in the European part of the present territory of Russia...


Russian Bayan Festival is Coming to Slovenia
The best accordionists of Russia, Slovenia and Hungary will gather at the festival "The Soul of Bayan".
Thousand-Year-Old Russian Psaltery Found Near Veliky Novgorod
Fragments of a lyre-shaped gusli (old Russian psaltery) have been unearthed by archeologists in the Troitsky-15 pit near Veliky Novgorod.
Evolution Of Balalaika Inside One Museum
The museum of Balalaika will open in Ulyanovsk.

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