Tar and Its Performance Art

 The sound of the instrument tar is the voice of true Azerbaijani spirit, and therefore, for Azerbaijanis, the sound of tar, is the voice of their native land. The name of the instrument translates as “wire, thread.” 

TarHeydar Aliyev Center

Tar is a plucked stringed musical instrument, with a body carved from mulberry tree, a thin membrane of stretched fish-skin covering the top, decorated with nacre.

Tar soundHeydar Aliyev Center

The sound of this magnificent stringed instrument impresses audiences. The sound of the instrument tar is the voice of true Azerbaijani spirit, and therefore, for Azerbaijanis, the sound of tar, is the voice of their native land. The name of the instrument translates as “wire, thread.

Ramiz Quliyev

Tar musicHeydar Aliyev Center

It is possible to convey the richness of both Eastern and classical European music to the audience with the tar. There is no doubt, it would be impossible to convey the musical and philosophical content of Azerbaijani mugham to the listener without it.

The structure of the tarHeydar Aliyev Center

By decision of the 7th Session of UNESCO’s Intergovernmental Committee on Intangible Cultural Heritage, held in Paris from December 3 to 7, 2012, “The craftsmanship and performance art of the stringed musical instrument tar” joined UNESCO’s Representative List of Intangible Cultural Heritage.

Tar music in the 1930sHeydar Aliyev Center

Professional tar masters have frequently performed in front of different audiences on world stages, and their performances have impressed the audience. Experts explain this phenomenon as “the perfect structure of the tar, the twisted wires that allow expressing national music, and in particular the mugham's delicacy to the listener; five frets, the bass string in the fretboard of the instrument; a wide range, harmony and the ability to play in many-voiced chords.

“Father of the Azerbaijani Tar”Heydar Aliyev Center

In the 70s of the 19th Century, Mirza Sadiq Asad oghlu from Shusha, a prominent Azerbaijani musician and tar master popularly known as Sadigjan, brought new features to the structure of the tar. He increased the number of wires to thirteen, reduced the size of the hollow body, and the tar began to be played against the chest. Most importantly, changing the form of the tar led to a more beautiful sound.

“Azerbaijani tar” became famous in the Eastern countries, and talented and professional tar performer Sadigjan began to be known as the “Father of the Azerbaijani Tar.” In the late 20s of the 20th century, the number of wires was reduced to eleven to make the instrument more stable.

Tar music in the 1930sHeydar Aliyev Center

In the 1930s, at a time when national culture was being persecuted, extensive debates were being held in the press about the rejection of the tar. At such a time the great composer Uzeyir Hajibeyli began to open tar classes at music schools.

The school of performance with notes, founded by Uzeyir Hajibeyli, improved the technical and artistic capabilities of the tar. Tar remains one of the rarest national musical instruments for which special musical pieces were written.

Craftsmanship and performance art of the Tar, a long-necked string musical instrumentHeydar Aliyev Center

The Tar is a long-necked plucked lute, traditionally crafted and performed in communities throughout Azerbaijan. Considered by many to be the country’s leading musical instrument, it features alone or with other instruments in numerous traditional musical styles.

Mirza Sadiq Asad oghluHeydar Aliyev Center

Mirza Sadig Asad oghlu (1846, Shusha – 1902, Shusha), was an Azerbaijani tar-player (sazanda). Sadig was born to a poor family of a watchman in Shusha. As a teenager, he took vocal lessons but lost his voice at the age of 18. He then took up pipe, kamancha and eventually tar.

Bust of Sadigjan (1967)Heydar Aliyev Center

Bust of Sadigjan. International Mugham Center of Azerbaijan

The International Mugham Center of Azerbaijan is a center of Azerbaijani arts and music aiming to promote, preserve and popularize the specific genre of Azerbaijani music, mugham. It is located in Baku Boulevard, in downtown Baku.

Ensemble of Sadigjan (1878)Heydar Aliyev Center

In the 1878s, Emseble of Sadigjan - Ata Bagdaguloglu, Sadigjan, Bulbuljan, Huseynbala, Vaso Kikiashvili.

Credits: Story

Mahabbat Mehdiyeva
The Director of Museum Department, Heydar Aliyev Center

Credits: All media
The story featured may in some cases have been created by an independent third party and may not always represent the views of the institutions, listed below, who have supplied the content.
Google apps