My most inspiring teacher is my flute studio professor, Dr. Large. She has done nothing but push to excellence my entire freshman year of college. Dr. Large is new at this University, and has taken an interest to every student of hers. I take lessons with weekly, and she has pushed me so far and I could not have gotten through my freshman year so good without her. She requires so much out of all of her students but she never pushes us unless she knows we can do it. I have gone so far this year in my playing and in my studies with the help of her. Every week I am to learn a new piece which is a lot to learn in a short amount of time. I know that I will succeed because I have put in the work of learning what I need to learn as a freshman in college. She has inspired me to push through the hard to get to whats good ahead. I have been so inspired to go far and beyond in my other classes as well. She is very supportive of all of us in the flute studio and I will never forget what an amazing teacher she has been to me.
I chose a video of an instrument called the algoza, which is a pair of flutes played together with one being a drone while the other plays a melody. I picked this particular instrument to transcribe because of the way it was played; you have to be very experienced to be able to play this instrument. I found this instrument very interesting because it is two flutes that are being played at the same time and with a constant sound being played throughout the entire tune.
I came upon several challenges by picking this piece. One of the biggest challenges of picking this particular piece is that when playing the algoza, the one thing that you have to master to play the algoza is to constantly blow rapid air into the instrument by using a technique called circular breathing, which is very challenging. Another challenge with this piece is putting it into a time signature, because the melody of the piece is mostly improvised, which puts a lot of grace note like playing. The flute is also played with five tones of the musical octave and no two instruments are tuned the same.
There were definitely some challenges in using this piece for my project but it was well worth it. I learned so much more about the culture of the instrument as well as how it’s played and when it is played. I love that this instrument is so old and that it is used to tell stories. I think it’s very interesting to know that the experience level of the instrument is so high and so difficult to learn to play it well.
I chose a video of an instrument called the algoza, which is an aerophonic instrument, which is a double flute. It is a Punjab woodwind instrument adopted by Sinhdi folk singers. It uses only five tones of the musical octave. One of the flutes is for a drone and the other is playing the melody on top of the drone. The player plays it using three fingers on each hand to play the melody. An expertise player can play the instrument using circular breathing. The instrument is made out of bamboo and is usually decorated with strings hanging off of the flute.
This instrument is found in the rural parts of Pakistan, India, and Punjab. This instrument was originally used to tell folk tales of Soni, Mahival and Mirza, Sahiban, which are both old tales of the Punjab. These are two of nine tragic love tales that have been passed from generation to generation using the algoza to tell the story. It has also become very popular in contemporary Bhangra music in the UK. Bhangra music first started in the 1960’s when several Punjab bands started experimenting with playing more western styles in the music. When these bands started experimenting with a more western style, the music had more of a rock feel in the music rather than a folk sound. Bhangra is a mix between Punjab and western style music. It became wildly popular in Britain and replacing the Punjab folk bands because it had rock sounds in the music instead of the repetitive sounds of the Punjab folk. The 1980’s became known as the golden age, or referred as the age of Bhangra music by the “bhangraheads”. By this time the music had changed so much that the original folk instruments including the algoza were rarely used at in the music. The very first Bhangra boy band was the Sahotas, which was a mix between Bhangra, rock, and dance. By the 1990’s Bhangra music took a turn back to the original folk sounds which used more dhol drumbeats and tumbi and more uses of the original folk instruments including the algoza.
The people who play this instrument for folk tunes are called the Langhas from Rajasthan. They are a muslim community found in Gujrat and Rajasthan in India. The community sings and plays music while entertaining the Sindhi-Sipahi, which is a community of Muslim Rajputs, who act as their jajmans (patrons). The Langhas are a community of folk musicians that play for others. They play at weddings as well to set the mood with songs of the desert.
The Algoza is a mystical instrument played by old groups that are very experienced players. The level of talent to play this instrument is high and has been passed down from generation to generation to pass the old stories along to others.
I grew up in a little town called Wellington. It’s a rural town just south of Wichita, Kansas. I grew up on a farm with my eight siblings: Kendra, Jesse, Miranda, Haley, Monica, Anna, Alexander, Aidan, and Myself. I attended our local high school and I went to Regional’s and competed every year with a solo. The last three years of high school I made it to State, which made me change my mind from majoring in Chemical Engineering to Music Education. It was definitely a positive change for me to pursue Music as a Career. I was also involved in Jazz Band which was something that I enjoyed greatly and it showed me how much I enjoy making music of any kind.
I think the first time I stand in front of a classroom of students I will be nervous but also excited as well. I’m nervous that I will mess up and forget what my lesson is. I think after I get used to it I will do well because I love kids and I love music. I think that everything will turn out and I will be good at teaching because I cant wait to share music to the world and teach them everything I know about music and hope that they grow to love music the way I have.
The one person in my life that musically influenced me would be my elementary, middle school and high school band teacher, Mr. David Brody. He taught me so much, especially how to love music the way I do. My grandmother also helped me through the years with supporting me in everything I do. She has a piano that I would doodle around on and she helped me learn how to play as well. My motivator, as I would call her, is my Mother. She has been someone who’s pushed me to try my best no matter what I’m doing.