This week in class we sing:
We sing "We Are Happy," a greeting song from Uganda, to open every All Around This World class. This week we say hello in Kyrgyz -- "Kandai!"
A LITTLE MORE
Much of today's Kyrgyz music is still traditional folk, a proud expression of ancient nomadic Kyrgyz life. Kyrgyz songs are often heroic epics, with traveling musicians known as "manaschi" telling tales of warriors and their adventures. The most popular story is the epic of Manas -- at 500,000 lines, it's considered the longest epic poem ever written, and one of the most extraordinary. As a well-known manaschi in the above-linked Tengir-Too documentary puts it, "Manas is a whole world and the whole world is Manas...." We're going to do our best to act out parts of the epic in class.
For an overview of Kyrgyz traditional music watch this beautiful video about Kyrgyz ensemble Tengir-Too. The first spoken line of the video is, "I think that through music you can understand the soul of a nation...."