ABOUT
INSTRUMENTS

Domra малаяThe history of the domra is very vague and ambiguous. It is known that the first allusions of the instrument belong to Russian chronicles of the XVIth century, it is mentioned as an instrument of bufoons. Nevertheless it is hard to say what the domra of those days looked like, because in 1648 domra was proclaimed an instrument of a devil and was forbidden by the church. As a result domra-players ("dormachi") start being persecuted, and instrument were burnt in fire. After such mass burnings domra disappears from custom, and its following history starts only in the end of the XIXth century with the name of V. V. Andreev. He reconstructed the instrument, gave it a second birth. Andreev created an orchestra which consisted of revived balalaikas and domras of different kinds from contrabasses to piccolos (including domra-alto, domra-bass), and invented the basics of modern performing technique for these instruments. Orchestra was a unique phenomenon and attracted huge amount of admirers and followers. Domra and balalaika became very popular instruments not only in Russia but also abroad.

Modern small domra - is a stringed plucked instruments with three metal strings, tuned in quarto E, A, D. Having the range of three octaves (E of the 1st octave - E of the 4th octave), the instrument obtains rich technical and expressive properties. Virtuoso technique of passages and arpeggios, flageolet, intervals, chord play make it possible to play pieces of any difficulty and any style. Thus versions of classical music occupy a substantioal place in our repertoir. Due to specific timbre these pieces aquir a unique colouring and new sounding. One plays domra using a plectrum, which is made of hard, steady to use materials: tortoise shell, plastic, kapron. That is why it is easier to derive a sharp sounding from domra and the players perform an accurate accomplishing a soft sound. Unusual tremolo technique brings trembling sound, and a silverish sound conquers the audience with the easiness brilliance, being a calling card of the instrument.


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