Astana Dombyra Party Highlights Kazakh Culture, Pride

ASTANA – Professional and amateur musicians participated in an Oct. 4 Dombyra party musical event at the new National Museum of Kazakhstan to promote the traditions of the Kazakh people and the national instrument known as the dombyra.

домбыра патиThe musicians played “kuis” (instrumental compositions) on their dombyras along with other traditional Kazakh melodies and folk songs. Guests also enjoyed the traditional Kazakh treat baursaks and the national drink kumys.

The Dombyra party was held at the museum, which was opened July 2 by Kazakh President Nursultan Nazarbayev, in order to gather those interested in Kazakh culture. The event was also attended by foreign visitors, diplomats and others.

“For us, it is important that young people do not forget their roots and understand the beauty of the national instruments, such as dombyra,” said one of the organisers of the event.

Music has been an integral part of Kazakhstan’s culture for centuries. Kazakhstan takes pride in the fact that its music is unique. Kazakh music is focused around its national instrument, the dombyra. A dombyra is a two-stringed, long-necked lute-type instrument with seven to nine frets. The tear-shaped instrument is played with one, two or five fingers. In ancient times, dombyra players wandered around Kazakh lands strumming their instruments singing poetry as they walked. The dombyra became the focal instrument of Kazakhstan folk music.

“The idea of the Dombyra party was born during the London Olympic games in August 2012, when our athletes won another golden medal. Inspired by the victory and pride for our country, a group of young people went to Nurzhol Boulevard and started to sing folk songs and play the dombyra. A crowd began to gather and it spontaneously grew into a national event,” said one of the party’s founders, journalist Maralbek Sagynganov.

Today, Dombyra parties gather listeners not only in all regional centres of Kazakhstan, but also in countries like Mongolia, Russia, Turkey, England, Portugal and China. Usually such parties abroad are organised by Kazakh students. The invitations to the event are sent via social networks.

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