|The dongbula is a stringed musical instrument of the Kazak
ethnicity in ancient China. The old and young members of Kazak families
are all good at playing the instrument. In Turkic language, the name dongbula
has special meanings. Dong describes the sound of the music, and bula
means to fix the strings.
The body of the dongbula is made of wood, and looks like an enlarged spoon. The making of the earliest form of dongbula is very simple. The artist cuts an entire piece of wood into the shape of a spoon, mounts a faceplate, and then draws two pieces of sheep intestines, and finally fits it onto nine tambours at the end of the handle.
With the dongbula, the Kazak people don't feel lonely while out cattle grazing. After returning home, they can enjoy themselves with their families, singing and dancing to the music played by dongbula.
The dongbula can be played solo or in ensemble and accompaniment. The way of performing is quite the same with that of other instruments. Through the various ways of performing the instrument, listeners may have vivid images of gurgling springs, clear bird twitter, joyful flocks of sheep, and sparkling horses with beating hooves.