Disappearing Instruments - Special English Audiobook

     Disappearing Instruments

Disappearing Instruments

  Thank you for joining us for today's Spotlight program
   Thank you for joining us for today's Spotlight program
  I'm Elizabeth Waid.
   I'm Elizabeth Waid.
  And I'm Rebekah Schipper.
   And I'm Rebekah Schipper.
  Spotlight uses a special English method of broadcasting.
   Spotlight uses a special English method of broadcasting.
  It is easier for people to understand,
   It is easier for people to understand,
  no matter where in the world they live.
   no matter where in the world they live.
  The music you just heard
   The music you just heard
  was from a Chinese guqin.
   was from a Chinese guqin.
  It is an instrument in danger of disappearing!
   It is an instrument in danger of disappearing!
  Today's Spotlight program is on instruments
   Today's Spotlight program is on instruments
  that are in danger!
   that are in danger!
  They are in danger
   They are in danger
  of becoming extinct!
   of becoming extinct!
  Music helps to make a culture special.
   Music helps to make a culture special.
  And music is an important part of most every culture.
   And music is an important part of most every culture.
  Music can have different uses
   Music can have different uses
  from culture to culture.
   from culture to culture.
  For example,
   For example,
  ancient Chinese music had a very special purpose.
   ancient Chinese music had a very special purpose.
  People used music to serve a person's spirit.
   People used music to serve a person's spirit.
  Music gave energy to a person's heart.
   Music gave energy to a person's heart.
  It brought grace
   It brought grace
  to one's life.
   to one's life.
  The Chinese used music to worship
   The Chinese used music to worship
  and celebrate life.
   and celebrate life.
  The Chinese also used their music
   The Chinese also used their music
  to record events.
   to record events.
  They did not sing words.
   They did not sing words.
  But
   But
  their music
   their music
  recorded the "feeling" of an event.
   recorded the "feeling" of an event.
  The music helped people to remember
   The music helped people to remember
  if the event was happy or sad.
   if the event was happy or sad.
  Here is another example.
   Here is another example.
  Each note in Indian music
   Each note in Indian music
  is connected to a sound in nature.
   is connected to a sound in nature.
  And much of Indian music
   And much of Indian music
  is held at the highest level of holiness.
   is held at the highest level of holiness.
  So, Indians
   So, Indians
  treat this music with much respect.
   treat this music with much respect.
  It is the same kind of respect
   It is the same kind of respect
  given to gods.
   given to gods.
  Finally,
   Finally,
  you may have heard of salsa music.
   you may have heard of salsa music.
  This music's drumbeat can put your feet to dancing!
   This music's drumbeat can put your feet to dancing!
  But salsa's beat
   But salsa's beat
  has another purpose.
   has another purpose.
  You see,
   You see,
  much of salsa music started in Cuba.
   much of salsa music started in Cuba.
  But the drumbeats in the music
   But the drumbeats in the music
  started in West Africa.
   started in West Africa.
  In early years
   In early years
  there were many African slaves in Cuba.
   there were many African slaves in Cuba.
  They did not have any instruments
   They did not have any instruments
  while they were slaves.
   while they were slaves.
  So, they created beats on any object they could find.
   So, they created beats on any object they could find.
  This helped them to feel connected to their home
   This helped them to feel connected to their home
  in Africa.
   in Africa.
  Later, the African drumbeats became salsa beats too.
   Later, the African drumbeats became salsa beats too.
  Music is a very important part of culture.
   Music is a very important part of culture.
  And a culture's instruments
   And a culture's instruments
  are needed to keep its music alive.
   are needed to keep its music alive.
  It would be sad
   It would be sad
  if a culture's traditional instruments
   if a culture's traditional instruments
  began to disappear.
   began to disappear.
  But, this is exactly what is happening!
   But, this is exactly what is happening!
  There are some instruments
   There are some instruments
  that are in danger of disappearing.
   that are in danger of disappearing.
  Margaret Birley lives in London England.
   Margaret Birley lives in London England.
  She wants to save instruments
   She wants to save instruments
  that may soon disappear.
   that may soon disappear.
  Margaret works at a special museum.
   Margaret works at a special museum.
  The museum collects
   The museum collects
  and saves instruments from all over the world.
   and saves instruments from all over the world.
  This museum
   This museum
  has about seven thousand
   has about seven thousand
  different instruments.
   different instruments.
  The instruments are from many different places.
   The instruments are from many different places.
  The workers at the museum try to learn
   The workers at the museum try to learn
  how people made each instrument.
   how people made each instrument.
  They also try to write down
   They also try to write down
  how to play
   how to play
  the instrument.
   the instrument.
  This museum shows interest
   This museum shows interest
  in many different instruments.
   in many different instruments.
  They are trying to save
   They are trying to save
  disappearing instruments
   disappearing instruments
  by placing them in their museum.
   by placing them in their museum.
  Margaret Birley
   Margaret Birley
  gives two reasons
   gives two reasons
  why instruments begin to disappear.
   why instruments begin to disappear.
  She says,
   She says,
  There are some instruments that fall out of fashion.
   There are some instruments that fall out of fashion.
  People no longer show interest in them.
   People no longer show interest in them.
  And then
   And then
  there are some instruments
   there are some instruments
  that have been taken away from people's cultures.
   that have been taken away from people's cultures.
  They are taken
   They are taken
  because of changes in political groups.
   because of changes in political groups.
  Here are two examples
   Here are two examples
  to support Margaret Birley's reasons.
   to support Margaret Birley's reasons.
  First,
   First,
  the guqin is a Chinese instrument.
   the guqin is a Chinese instrument.
  This stringed instrument
   This stringed instrument
  is well over two thousand [2000] years old.
   is well over two thousand [2000] years old.
  Today,
   Today,
  there are only a few people in the world
   there are only a few people in the world
  who know how to play it.
   who know how to play it.
  Western style pop music
   Western style pop music
  is now very popular in China.
   is now very popular in China.
  Many Chinese young people
   Many Chinese young people
  show no interest in learning to play the ancient guqin.
   show no interest in learning to play the ancient guqin.
  They would rather
   They would rather
  learn about music coming from America.
   learn about music coming from America.
  They believe that American music
   They believe that American music
  is more fashionable.
   is more fashionable.
  That is not to say
   That is not to say
  that all Chinese young people
   that all Chinese young people
  are not interested in the guqin.
   are not interested in the guqin.
  There are some people still learning how to play it.
   There are some people still learning how to play it.
  If people continue to learn,
   If people continue to learn,
  then there is hope for the guqin to survive.
   then there is hope for the guqin to survive.
  Second,
   Second,
  the rubab is an instrument from Afghanistan.
   the rubab is an instrument from Afghanistan.
  It is the country's national instrument.
   It is the country's national instrument.
  So it is very special to the Afghani people.
   So it is very special to the Afghani people.
  In 1990,
   In 1990,
  the Taleban, an extreme group,
   the Taleban, an extreme group,
  banned the playing of musical instruments.
   banned the playing of musical instruments.
  This included the rubab.
   This included the rubab.
  Situations like this
   Situations like this
  put instruments at risk of disappearing.
   put instruments at risk of disappearing.
  Alemu Aga lives in Ethiopia.
   Alemu Aga lives in Ethiopia.
  He believes he has an important job.
   He believes he has an important job.
  He is trying to keep one special instrument
   He is trying to keep one special instrument
  from disappearing.
   from disappearing.
  You see,
   You see,
  he knows how to play the beganah harp.
   he knows how to play the beganah harp.
  And he is one of the only people
   And he is one of the only people
  who knows how to play it.
   who knows how to play it.
  The beganah has strings,
   The beganah has strings,
  like a guitar.
   like a guitar.
  The strings are touched with the fingers to make sound.
   The strings are touched with the fingers to make sound.
  Some people
   Some people
  believe that the beganah
   believe that the beganah
  is one of the oldest instruments in history.
   is one of the oldest instruments in history.
  Alemu Aga says,
   Alemu Aga says,
  Our way of knowing about the beganah
   Our way of knowing about the beganah
  is by reading the Bible.
   is by reading the Bible.
  The beganah
   The beganah
  is in the first book of the Bible.
   is in the first book of the Bible.
  Genesis is the first place
   Genesis is the first place
  where the beganah is mentioned.
   where the beganah is mentioned.
  When you put in the time,
   When you put in the time,
  it is more than three thousand eight hundred [3800] years
   it is more than three thousand eight hundred [3800] years
  before Christ.
   before Christ.
  Alemu Aga explains the use of the beganah.
   Alemu Aga explains the use of the beganah.
  He says that it has mostly a religious purpose.
   He says that it has mostly a religious purpose.
  It is connected
   It is connected
  to religion
   to religion
  because the Bible talks about it.
   because the Bible talks about it.
  Mr. Aga says
   Mr. Aga says
  that people never play the beganah for pleasure,
   that people never play the beganah for pleasure,
  or just for fun.
   or just for fun.
  Traditionally they only play it in a religious setting.
   Traditionally they only play it in a religious setting.
  People often play it in church.
   People often play it in church.
  But, they also play it outside of church.
   But, they also play it outside of church.
  Alemu Aga says,
   Alemu Aga says,
  The beganah is for meditation
   The beganah is for meditation
  and also for praying.
   and also for praying.
  The instrument has the power to make people concentrate,
   The instrument has the power to make people concentrate,
  listen, and be carried away in thoughts.
   listen, and be carried away in thoughts.
  Alemu Aga wants to continue the beganah's long history.
   Alemu Aga wants to continue the beganah's long history.
  He says that this instrument is a traditional instrument.
   He says that this instrument is a traditional instrument.
  He says
   He says
  that the people who know how to play it
   that the people who know how to play it
  have an important job.
   have an important job.
  That job
   That job
  is to pass the beganah's music down to the next generation.
   is to pass the beganah's music down to the next generation.
  People must teach their children
   People must teach their children
  the tradition of the beganah.
   the tradition of the beganah.
  It is good to learn about different cultures
   It is good to learn about different cultures
  around the world.
   around the world.
  But,
   But,
  it is equally good to learn about our own cultures, too.
   it is equally good to learn about our own cultures, too.
  It is good to keep cultural traditions alive,
   It is good to keep cultural traditions alive,
  like music.
   like music.
  Yes!
   Yes!
  Just imagine if everyone had the same music.
   Just imagine if everyone had the same music.
  The world would not seem very interesting.
   The world would not seem very interesting.
  Different instruments
   Different instruments
  make each culture unique,
   make each culture unique,
  and special.
   and special.
  It is good
   It is good
  to celebrate our own cultures.
   to celebrate our own cultures.
  It is good to keep traditions alive.
   It is good to keep traditions alive.
  By learning to love our own cultures
   By learning to love our own cultures
  people can learn to love other cultures too.
   people can learn to love other cultures too.
  What a wonderful world.
   What a wonderful world.
  The writer of today's program
   The writer of today's program
  was Rebekah Schipper.
   was Rebekah Schipper.
  The voices you heard
   The voices you heard
  were from the United States.
   were from the United States.
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   Computer users
  can hear these programs,
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   at www.radio.english.net.
  This program is called 'Disappearing Instruments'.
   This program is called 'Disappearing Instruments'.
  We love to hear comments
   We love to hear comments
  and questions from our listeners.
   and questions from our listeners.
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   You can email us.
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   radio @English . net.
  We hope you can join us again next time for Spotlight.
   We hope you can join us again next time for Spotlight.
  Goodbye!
   Goodbye!