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Voice of tradition

Updated: 2013-07-11 14:19
By Wang Kaihao ( China Daily)

Voice of tradition

Under the guidance of Od Suren, students start their Khoomei class practicing breathing exercise at Od Suren Khoomei School in Hohhot. Photos by Wang Kaihao / China Daily

A school in the Inner Mongolia autonomous region ensures the ancient sounds of throat singing reverberates through the past and into the future. Wang Kaihao reports in Hohhot.

Durenjana and his three friends get stares when they bleat from their throats as they walk through crowded shopping malls.

It's not immediately apparent to onlookers that the 25-year-old and his companions are seizing a rare chance to practice the ancient performing art of Mongolian throat singing in the mall in the Inner Mongolia autonomous region's capital Hohhot.

"I have to practice whenever I can," Durenjana says.

"That's what I come here for."

He has spent the past five years studying Khoomei, an ancient throat-singing technique of ethnic Mongolians and Tuvans. He has performed on China Central Television but still calls himself an amateur.

One or more pitches sound simultaneously over a fundamental pitch in Khoomei.

Khoomei's origins are uncertain. But it is generally believed to have derived from herders' imitations of animal sounds and to have later been incorporated by lamas into religious rituals.

Voice of tradition

Voice of tradition

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