UN Day Concert
Traditionally, UN Day is marked by an international concert in the General Assembly Hall.
The 2011 UN Day Concert took place on Thursday, 27 October 2011, from 7:00 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. in the General Assembly Hall at UN Headquarters in New York.
In observance of the 66th anniversary of the establishment of the United Nations Organization, the concert this year was sponsored by the Permanent Mission of Mongolia to the United Nations, and was dedicated to Celebrating Cultural Diversity.
Featuring the Mongolian National Horse Fiddle Ensemble and the National Academic Ensemble of Folk Song and Dance, the 90-minute concert featured a selection of Mongolian traditional music, opera, contortion and dance, as well as contemporary pieces and world classics.
The concert is available on the UN Webcast and was shown on Time Warner Cable Channel 150 in the New York City area.
The Horse-Head Fiddle
The morin khuur is a traditional Mongolian bowed stringed instrument. It is one of the most important musical instruments of the Mongol people, and is considered a symbol of the Mongolian nation. The morin khuur is one of the Masterpieces of the Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity identified by UNESCO. It produces a sound which is poetically described as expansive and unrestrained, like a wild horse neighing, or like a breeze in the grasslands.
This genre is called "Long song" (Urtyn duu) because each syllable of text is extended for a long duration. A four-minute song may only consist of ten words. Lyrical themes vary depending on context; they can be philosophical, religious, romance, or celebratory, and often use horses as a symbol or theme repeated throughout the song.
Perhaps the best-known musical form of the Mongols is the throat
singing tradition known as hoomii. Sung differently than traditional
vocals, this unique type of singing involves the production of two
distinctively audible pitches at the same time, including a low pedal
note, or drone, derived from the fundamental frequency of the vocal
cord vibrations, and higher melodic notes that result when the
singer's mouth acts as a filter, selecting one note at a time from
among the drone's natural overtone series pitches.
Click on the image to download the PDF