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date: 16 November 2019


  • Gert-Matthias Wegner
  •  and Simonne Bailey


Term used for shawms played by the professional Newar musician caste of the Kathmandu Valley, Nepal. Nowadays the most commonly played mvālĩ is the straight gujarāti, with a turned wooden body about 34 cm long and a heavy metal bell flaring to about 10 cm in diameter. The gujarāti has seven fingerholes on the front, the lowest of which is closed at all times, plus a vent. The short, compound double reed is made from a palmyra palm leaf (Borassus flabellifer) and is mounted on a brass, copper, or white metal staple about 8 cm long. On the staple, most players use a disc (pirouette), originally of ivory or bone but now any convenient object such a button or a coin. The gujarāti is thought to have been brought to Nepal from the Indian state of Gujarāt.

The curved mvālĩ is called deśimvālĩ, or pūjā mvālĩ and is thought to be related to the Nepali ...

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