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Dharma’s Morin Khuur, best instrument for nostalgia


02-24-2017 14:11 BJT

By CCTV.com Panview editor team     

Editor’s foreword: "Looking China" International Youth Film Project is co-organized by the Academy for International Communication of Chinese Culture (AICCC), Beijing Normal University and Huilin Foundation, which aims to showcase the contrasting simplicity and glamour, the antiquity and fashion of China through unique perspectives of young foreign film makers.

As of the year 2016, 101 students from 25 countries were invited to participate in the project. They were stationed in 13 municipality, provinces and autonomous regions here in China. Every filmmaker has worked out a 10-minute short film about Chinese culture around the topic of “ethnic minority”.

The film, Dharma’s Morin Khuur, directed by Saad Hassan Khan, focuses on traditional Mongolian music and how today’s ethnic Mongolians hold ancient customs dear to their hearts.

The Dharmar’s Morin Khuur may not be well-known to many people all over the world, but ethnic Mongolians living in Inner Mongolia hope to promote the music so it would become more familiar tunes for music lovers all over the world.

Mongolian-style music has captured some fame for throat music, since some say it sounds like a frog croaking. The Mongolians live in a vast open air landscape with rolling hills and blowing winds.

Living in such an isolated region can make people feel so lonely. This loneliness is definitely reflected in the tunes played by Morin Khuur. And the sounds of Morin Khuur are so penetrating that Mongolians living afar could only be reminded how lonely they were by hearing each other playing it.

Even in today’s modern times, most Mongolians are living in towns and cities, the tunes by Morin Khuur is still a nostalgic sensation whenever they hear it.

Meanwhile, Dharma’s Morin Khuur instruments reflect the Mongolian love for horses. The main instrument, morin khuur, looks like a cello, but smaller and like a violin, but larger.

Most morin khuurs are designed with a horse’s head at the top and tail at the bottom, wood-carved.

Mongolians love Genghis Khan and believe the best way to live on in his spirit is to celebrate horse culture and they can do so by playing traditional music with a morin khuur instrument.


(The opinions expressed here do not necessarily reflect the opinions of Panview or CCTV.com)

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