Myanmar Musical Instrument
Myanmar Harp (Saung)
A "harp" is called Saung in Myanmar. There basically was 2 types: Byat
Saung and Saung Gauk (bent harp). There almost is nobody who can play
byat saungs these days.
Composition of a Myanmar Harp
Can you imagine how it is made of? The composition of Myanmar harps is very interesting. The body is made of padauk, the famous Myanmar mahogany. The flat bar is made of cutch wood. It is covered with the leather of a female deer. And the strings are made of silk!
Myanmar Xylophone (Pattalar)
The Bamboo Xylophone (or) the Pattalar that is known in Myanmar language as an ancient musical instrument with the sound box underneath, with the seven graduated keys, it can produce melodious and unique sounds to the ears. Later on, ten keys were added and nowadays, 24 keys are being used. The name Pattalar means a musical instrument on which you can play from the crescendo to the bases or from the base to the crescendo. Whichever the musical has to be played and when you play the xylophone, you need two sticks wrapped around with the cloth at the top which can produce harmonious melody or sound. To make a bamboo xylophone, first, you must split the Waboe bamboo into four parts and then immerse it in the mud, about a year and then you have to wash it thoroughly and later on, you have to smoke it for a year. So, the bamboo becomes seasoned. The seasoned bamboos are cut into slats which are smoothened out, polished and made in a left to right position where 22 bamboo slats are sandwiched with the largest slates which are one and half feet and shortest is 6 inches respectively. Later on, the slates are drilled with the holes so that the string, which will hold them together and can be passed through. In this way, the Myanmar musical instrument bamboo xylophone is made. There are seven musical keys in the Western musical note. Also Myanmar Pattalar has seven musical keys, which are reproduced from the sounds of animals and also from Myanmar Oboe, which has seven holes. In the ways, we can see Myanmar musical instruments are differ in shape and tone from western musical instruments but they all have the same musical notes, which all the musician can understand and appreciate.
Hne (or) Oboe is one of our traditional wind instruments in Myanmar. It
has been used in Myanmar since ancient time and is created by using a
metal horn, a wooden flute and a palm reed. The oboe is a double-reed
woodwind instrument having a high pitch, penetrating tone among other
musical instruments that is not played by hand or by small striker but
played by blowing through a reed inserted at its top to get strong and
soft voices by opening and closing of respective holes on it. There are
two kinds of Myanma oboe namely big oboe and small oboe. Big oboe has
more bass than the small.
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