Altai Throat-Singers

Altai Throat-Singers

Published on Dec 5, 2011

Altai throat-singing is traditionally used to accurately convey oral history by transmitting images into the audience’s minds with sound. Three different types of throat-singing are demonstrated in this piece — normal range with overtone, a base drone, and a whistle-like overtone. Music by the student’s folk music group “Echo,” sponsored by the ethnocultural center “Sacred Altai,” directed by Svetlana Shatrovna Katynova. These talented young Altai musicians are, against great odds, dedicating their lives to the renaissance of sacred Altai culture through the art of throat-singing. The men are playing traditional Altai instruments called the topshur, which has two strings. The two women are playing mouth-harps called homuz.