The Formal Strategies of Turkmen Dutar Masters

Yazar: |2019-07-19T17:22:01+03:0019 Temmuz, 2019|Akademik, Makaleler|

This article analyzes the form of compositions in a tradition of instrumental performance for the two-stringed, long-necked lute dutar, the main instrument used in the traditional music played by Turkmens in Turkmenistan and northern Iran. While this instrumental tradition is perhaps ancillary to a more prominent vocal tradition surrounding the figure of the bagşy, a bard similar to the aşık or ashug in Azerbaijan and Turkey, musicians in parts of Turkmenistan have nonetheless developed a rich repertoire of instrumental compositions. I argue that within instrumental dutar compositions, there are no fixed, traditional compositional forms akin to those found in many other musical traditions. However, it is possible to identify what I call recurring formal strategies for organizing compositions.