Tuvan/Chinese throat-singing festival

I received news from Aldar Tamdyn, the good-hearted and pun-loving member of the Tuvan group Chirgilchin, who is now also the director of the Tuvan Cultural Center. There will be a combined festival of throat singing (khöömei, in Tuvan) to be held in Tuva AND in China. It is possible for participants (khoomeigie as Aldar calls them) to make the journey from Tuva to China with the Tuvan musicians, which promises to be an outstanding opportunity to immerse yourself deeply in throat singing and meet a lot of musicians from both sides of the Russian-Mongolian border.


Aldar wrote:

“Greetings Khoomeigie!
The Tuvan Cultural Center would like to personally invite you to the 2014 “Music of the Great Steppe Festival”. The festival will take place in Kyzyl, Tuva, Russia June 26-28, 2014. Participants are being invited from all over the world. We welcome your participation at our festival in the birthplace of Khoomei culture.”

Foreign throat singers and guttural artists who want to join the competition should get in touch with the organisers as soon as possible. If you have never been to Tuva and dream about once doing it, then perhaps this may be a good opportunity. Send an email to tuvancenter@gmail.com to register.

There is a chance to study in small groups with the excellent musicians
of Chirgilchin:

“We are also offering special master classes for those who choose to arrive in Tuva early. These classes will be taught by contemporary masters of the craft:

Mongun-ool Ondar, the recent recipient of “Notable Artist Of The Russian Federation” as well as many times Grand Prix winner of the International Khoomei Symposium and member of the world famous group, Chirgilchin.

Igor Koshkendey, recipient of the coveted “Throat Singer of the People of the Republic of Tuva”, a member of the Tuvan National Orchestra as well as a member of Chirgilchin.

Other teachers will include other members of the Tuvan National Orchestra, Ensemble Tuva, Alash, and Tyva Kyzy.

This is an incredible opportunity for the Khoomeigie enthusiast.
These Master classes will take place from June 19th thru the 28th.

During this meeting, we will be forming duets and trios with the students. Then we will drive to China to participate in the Throat Singing Festival for ensembles in Manchuria. “

This festival, the first festival of traditional Asian overtone singing to be held in China, takes place in the city of Manzhouli from July 5 to 9, 2014.

Manzhouli (map) is just across the Siberian border, and slightly east of the Republic of Mongolia. I guess it’s about a two-day car-journey from Tuva’s capital Kyzyl. Since it is a multinational event, permits to cross the border at Manzhouli should be included in the package or easy to obtain on the spot with the invitation of the festival.

The Tuvan Cultural Centre website offers a bit more information:
“The competition will be attended by the unique folklore groups from different parts of Russia, China and the Republic of Tuva. Organizers invite throat singers from other countries to participate in soloist competition.

To participate in the contest a competitor must complete an application and return it no later than May 1, 2014 by e -mail: tuvancenter@gmail.com”

Please also check the Tuvan Cultural Center’s website, http://tuvaculture.com. I suggest to those who are interested to write to the above email address a.s.a.p., to find out more details about participation fees, program, accommodation, visa, et cetera.

Catch a video of Chirgilchin playing for goats here on Youtube. “Chirgilchin normally plays music for people about goats. This performance is a song for goats about people.”

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