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date: 14 November 2019

Dulali [bitu ni vakatagi, bitu ucu, duvu vatagi]locked

  • Raymond Ammann

Extract

[bitu ni vakatagi, bitu ucu, duvu vatagi]

Nose flute of Fiji. The instrument, known locally by many names, ranges from 35 to 70 cm long and 3 to 6 cm in diameter. It is made of a single internode of bamboo, closed at both ends by the nodes, and has four to nine finger holes evenly spaced along the length and often three additional holes evenly spaced around the midpoint. It is probable that it functions as a vessel flute. Some examples in museums show burned-in decorations. Fijian nose flutes are now almost obsolete. Formerly, they accompanied certain meke dances and women singing—entertainment for chiefs—and it is said that the music had the power to attract women. Music recorded in 1972 was based on a three-tone scale, but it must have been possible to play more notes. Nose flutes also existed on Tahiti, Samoa, Tonga, and other Pacific islands.

P. Crowe: ‘Nose Flute Music of Fiji’, Domodomo: Fiji Museum Quarterly...

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