Kemancha – stringed musical instrument. Its history of appearance is connected with many countries: Azerbaijan, Greece, Armenia, Dagestan, Georgia, Iran and others. In the countries of the Middle and Near East, the kemancha is considered a national musical instrument.
Ancestor – Persian kemancha
The Persian kemancha is considered the most ancient, the ancestor of different types of kemancha. Translated from the Persian language, the word “kemancha” means “a small bowed instrument.” The kemancha in the Persian version looked like this: a wooden neck of a straight or round shape, a soundboard made of thin fish, snake skin or a bull bladder, an onion-shaped bow with horsehair. Kemanchi can be of different variations depending on the country of origin. In Armenia, mostly four-stringed, three-stringed in Turkey, two-stringed among the Kurds, there are even six-stringed instruments.
Ancestor from Armenia
The first mention of the kemancha dates back to the XNUMXth-XNUMXth century, when during the excavations of the ancient Armenian city of Dvina, a bowl with the image of a singer with a kemancha in his hands was discovered. It became a sensation, until that moment, the birth of the instrument was dated to the XII-XIII centuries. The oldest kemancha had a support and a long fingerboard, only one string. Later, two more were added, and the modern instrument has four strings. The peak of the popularity of Armenian kemanches falls on the XNUMXth-XNUMXth centuries.
In Turkey, there is also an ancestor – this is Kemeche. Pear-shaped body, cut lengthwise, 10-15 cm wide, 40-41 cm long. The musician holds the kemeche vertically, but plays with the fingernails rather than the fingertips.
Lyra comes from Byzantium
The Pontic lyre comes from Byzantium. There is no exact data on the time of origin, it is assumed that this is the 1920th-XNUMXth centuries. AD The tool was distributed on the shores of the Black Sea. During the Ottoman Empire, the Persian lira received the second name “kemenche”. Until the XNUMXth century, it was played in Turkey, in the south of Russia, and later in Greece. The relatives of the Pontic lyre are bottle-shaped, have a narrow resonator and a long neck. The monolithic body is made of hornbeam, plum or mulberry, the top deck is made of pine. Until XNUMX, the strings were made of silk, the sound was weak, but melodic. The musician played sitting or standing, often in a circle of dancing artists.
The Azerbaijani version of the instrument has a body, neck and spire. The tool is made on a special machine. Much attention is paid to the distance between the fretboard and the strings.
The meaning of kemancha in the history of the music of the East
Kemancha is perfect for both solo and ensemble music making. In Soviet times, the instrument was used at pop concerts. Today, kemancha is especially loved by professional folk musicians.