Uncommon Instrument Awareness Day is celebrated on July 31 and is a great opportunity to get to know unusual musical instruments. The day reminds us there are a huge number of original instruments in the world you listen to.
Music is an integral part of society and culture. For example, the statues of ancient Cyprus are depicted with lyres, and the lyre is also present on a statue presented in the British Museum. In the culture of the ancient Cypriots, rattles were used both to entertain people and drive away evil spirits.
The ancient Romans did not look for easy ways; a complex musical instrument, the hydraulis, appeared in their culture. It made sounds as water created pressure and forced air into a system of pipes and keys. It was impossible to play it alone. And the Ancient Greeks had music with any important event – birthdays, weddings, funerals, work, even illness. They used woodwind and bone instruments. In Asia they loved to play trumpets, and in Egypt, the harp. By the 12th century, there were many musical instruments in the world, including the guitar.
- A guitar-like instrument was called the citole, and is in fact the forerunner of the violin.
- The first electric instruments appeared in the 19th century.
- The shofar is a Jewish instrument made from a ram’s horn and is used during Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur.
- The didgeridoo is a wind instrument invented by the Aboriginals of Northern Australia. Studies prove its sound improves health.
- Djembe is one of the rarest and most unusual African drums.
How to take part
Learn more about unusual instruments; there are a huge number of them in the world. If you know how and love to play instruments, visit a music store and pick up something interesting for yourself. Sign up for lessons at a music school. Listen to recordings with unusual instruments – such music is incredibly atmospheric and colorful.
When is Uncommon Instrument Awareness Day celebrated in 2023?
Uncommon Instrument Awareness Day is observed on July 31 each year.