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PIPA

Dan Ty ba (PiPa)

Ty ba is a plucking stringed instrument of the Viet majority. Some sources proved that Ty ba has long appeared in China under the name Pipa, and Japan under Biwa.

Ty ba is made from wood of wootung tree. Its neck connects with a sound box forming a shape of cut-half pear. The undecorated surface is made from light and soft wood (wootung wood- Ngo Dong wood). A bridge located at one end the body is for the strings to cross. The head of Ty ba is sophisticatedly carved with a longevity character, or bat figure at times. There are 4 wooden tuning pegs on the neck of Ty ba. The whole length of the lute body varies from 94 to 100cm. On the neck of Ty ba, there are 4 curved ivory pieces called the Four Heaven Kings. however, it has four frets in addition to eight others made from bamboo or wood that are located on the soundboard of Ty ba, and give different pitches. The frets stand low and close to each other following the heptatonic scale. In the past, people used to utilize silk to make strings and smoothed them with beeswax. Nowadays, nylon strings are used instead. The 4 strings are tuned in sequence of a fourth - a second - a fourth i.e. Do - Fa - Sol - Do1 or Sol - Do1 - Re1 - Sol1. Instrumentalist usually plays the Ty ba with a tortoise-shell or plastic plectrum.

 The player uses a plectrum which she holds in her right hand and plucks either upward or downward in a quick run. The technique for the left hand, which presses the strings, includes glissando, staccato, arpeggio and tremolo.

 In Vietnam, Ty ba is usually performed in orchestras such as Royal orchestras including Nha Nhac (Elegant music) and Thi Nhac (Poem music), Thien Nhac orchestra of Buddhism, Tai Tu orchestra, Bat Am orchestra (orchestra consists of eight musical instruments), and integrated traditional orchestra.

Although Ty ba took its root so early in other countries, it has been localized as time went by, and has today become an instrument of Vietnam, which can profoundly present musical pieces of Vietnamese style in the realm of instrumental music.

 Price: Professional Student grade:$200.00 and up, plus shipment fee

          Professional Artist grade: $350.00 and up, plus shipment fee

          Master grade: $500.00 and up, plus shipment fee

 CD: $15.00 each plus shipment fee

Discountís available for larger orders.

 


 

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