Friday, April 20, 2007

Midwinterhoornblazen in Twenthe

A midwinterhoorn is an instrument, used in the eastern part of Holland, called Twente. People play it between the first Sunday of Advent and Epiphany. Go to Midwinterhoornblazen for audio of the horn and to see how they are made.

A midwinterhoorn is crafted by splitting and gouging out a curved piece of timber. (mostly birch, alder, willow or poplar). A hole is drilled at the smallest end for the mouthpiece. The two halves are reunited with glue. No instrument is identical to another.

This site shows how the horns are made and played and even has a link for the sound of a horn. A good player can get six to seven notes out of a midwinterhoorn. It has a melancholy sound. When players get together they play a call and response type of song. This is derived from the days when farmers would blow the horn to communicate with their neighbors in winter.

Originally published --date-- by Gael Stirler

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