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Oskar & Flute
The Oskar is a descendant of magical Hang from Switzerland and the SteelPan from Trinidad - two of the most recent musical instruments to be crafted last century. Its etheral sound soothes like a lullaby and it is often used in healing ceremony. The flute is found in many cultures throughout the world, often mimicking sounds in nature, the human voice or conversation. The wooden flute offers a soft sound.
Flute played by Michael Franklin
Hang played by Ann-Marie Boudreau
When in recovery or transition, patients are forced to stay in bed, often in the noisy, unfamiliar sterility of a hospital room.
Music can aide in transporting patients, taking them (and their caregivers) on sonic journeys to some far off place. When the music has stopped, patients report an uplifted mood, deeper relaxation and a sense of peace. You can read about the intersection of sound and healing here or sign up for a course here.
Take a sonic journey through the videos and sound links below, to hear some of our talented musicians.
The santur was invented in Mesopotamia (modern-day Iraq) in ancient Babylonian (1600-911 BCE) and neo-Assyrian (911-612 BCE) eras. This instrument was traded and traveled to different parts of the middle east and each country customized and designed their own versions to adapt to their musical scales and tunings. The original santur was made with tree bark, stones and stringed with goat intestines. The Mesopotamian santur is also the father of the harp, the Chinese yangqin, the harpsichord, the qanun, the cimbalom and the American and European hammered dulcimers. The santur became especially popular in Iran after Khomeini banned all types of music other than classical Iranian music, which resulted in the revival of the otherwise semi-forgotten instrument in Iran.
"Dew in the Morning" featuring the Santur played by Mehdi Rezania
The shakuhachi is certainly Japan's most well-known woodwind instrument. A vertically-held bamboo flute, it is made from the very bottom of a bamboo tree. The instrument takes its name from its standard length of one foot (shaku) and eight (hachi) parts of a foot, approximately 54cm. There are other lengths of the instrument as wellFour finger holes are put on the front of the instrument and a thumbhole on the back. The mouthpiece is the open top of the pipe itself with the front side cut at a slight and angle to facilitate blowing the instrument. Although the placement of holes and tuning of the instrument is a very delicate process, the instrument itself is of a basically simple construction. This allows for very complex playing techniques such as the use of the breath, blowing angle, or partial-holding of finger holes to make delicate pitch changes. The shakuhachi has served as a unique bridge between Japanese and Western cultures.
"Angels Lament" featuring Shakuhachi by Debbie Danbrook
North Indian/Hindustani Sitar
This popular instrument from India actually represents the human spinal cord with the sitar's moveable frets signifying our back's vertebrae. Some sitars feature a resonant gourd at the top. In the ancient Vedic texts, the many hundreds of ragas (scales) in Indian music are played to suit various times of day and moods (rasas). Sitar is often accompanied by North Indian tabla drums and/or a drone played by the fretless stringed instrument, the vina. After experiencing a sitar concert, many listeners are deeply relaxed.
"Mother Divine" featuring the Sitar, Raga played by
Mosaic Homecare invited us to perform as part of their 2014 Senior's Month in June 2014. Watch how the audience enjoys this interactive performance in the video above, featuring Ann-Marie Boudreau. Stay tuned to hear Ann-Marie & Iven Simonetti in more beautiful performance videos on our YouTube Channel - a perfect soundtrack to accompany your hectic day.