Saturday, November 7, 2009

Jal Tarang: Music from Water

That's the Jal Tarang. An ancient Indian concussion instrument comprising of a set of porcelain or bronze bowls (cups) of different sizes filled with water (coloured spectacularly here). The set consists of 15 or 22 bowls (cups), mostly only china bowls as preferred by artistes today. Water is poured into the cups and the pitch is changed by adjusting the volume of water in the cup. The number of cups depends on the melody being played. The bowls mostly are arranged in a half-circle in front of the player who can reach them all easily. The player softly hits the cups with a wooden stick on the border to get the sound.

Must be quite a task to tune this instrument!

This was in a Mumbai mall on Indian Independence Day 2009 and I was perched up in a higher floor to catch that 'top view'.