Karineh Hovhannessian

Music of Armenia, Vol. 4: Kanon/Traditional Zither Music

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On this volume of Celestial Harmonies' series of Armenian music, Karineh Hovhanessian, one of the premier zither players in Armenia, performs a number of traditional works on the kanon. The kanon is the semi-classical zither of Armenia, similar to a psaltery. The works encompassed on this album lie somewhere between classical works and folk songs, though they are all solely instrumental. This is what the kanon is now used for: a mixture of traditions in a country left behind by much of the rest of the world. The playing is intricate by any measure, and generally well backed by the accompaniment. Hovhanessian is one of the contemporary masters from the country, and her speed and complexity of playing herein show why she is regarded as such. Pick up this album for a short peek into one aspect of the musical culture of Armenia.

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