Drums have been accompanying mankind since ancient times. Once they were used during magic rites and holiday rituals. The Turkmens believed that playing a percussion instrument kept evil spirits away.
The round shape of the drum represents the Universe, and its uniform rhythm is like its beating pulse. This sound excites, enlivens the dormant spirit and energy. Clinical studies prove that playing the drums has a healing effect, and is an excellent way to relieve stress.
– Learning to play the eastern drum is not difficult, music teacher Elchin Rzayev says. – I began to train in the eighth grade, and I mastered several rhythms in two weeks. Probably it was because I really dreamed of learning to “strike”. I constantly listened to audio recordings, watched how professional drummers did it. And then I began to take lessons from virtuoso musician Hakberdi Allamuradov.
The drum exists in many cultures of the world. Once it was made of the skin of reptiles and fish, which was pulled on a wooden frame. The skins and bones of mammals were also used. The Turkmen dep or deprek (from the word “strike”) is a direct descendant of the tambourines depicted in the rhytons of Nisa.
Deprek is a musical instrument with a round wooden shell, a leather membrane and small iron rings fixed on the inside of the shell. Turkmen women used this tambourine drum to accompany the ritual dance “chapak”.
– In fact, playing the drum brings great fun, Elchin continues. – There are countless rhythms that can’t be repeated by everyone. But first of all, hands must be well developed to play the drum. We play oriental percussion instruments without sticks, so each palm clap must be accurate. Naturally, the muscular system of the wrists also trains in the drum classes, and the children’s hearing develops and the concentration of attention increases.
For several years, Elchin Rzayev was cherishing an idea of opening a children’s drum studio, and ultimately, his idea has been put into practice. The musician-teacher invites boys who want to learn how to play the oriental drum to be part of a small hobby group led by him.
– Each trainee should immediately understand that if he has decided to learn something, it is better to study with one teacher, otherwise you can lose all your skills. Just striking the drum is, of course, not an art; some tunes consist of 7-8 rhythms, so skill is required to master a complex technique. And the result obtained in the classes should always be repeated at home and rehearsed more often.
According to the teacher, it is much better to engage in class with other children than alone. Firstly, group training immediately prepares the drummer for work in the ensemble, and secondly, the atmosphere prevailing in the music studio promotes the desire of students to learn new, more complex rhythms. Here the children learn from each other.