Gallery of Andean Instruments
Antara means zampoña or siku in Quechua.
of only one row of reeds and is similar to the Romanian pan-pipe Naiy.
Antaras exist in different keys. In the whole area of the cordillera they
are tuned in pentatonic scale. Mainly in the forest areas of Peru, Bolivia
and Amazonas different forms of tuning are usual – also diatonic and
chromatic scale – which facilitates playing the very special melodies (as
for zampoña and siku).
the famous Barroco Andino play classic themes with antaras apart from
other wind instruments. In Germany – in jazz and bossa nova – Alaya, Los
Andinos and the well-known guitar player and composer José Rogerio play
a wind instrument, belongs to the quenas: It originates from the Quechua
and Aymara. Due to its size, the register is deep.
the kenacho is tuned in Re-mayor (D-major), but it can also be played in
a lower key – producing a lasting expression of melancholy and sensivity
of a living cultural community.
during ritual and religious celebrations, but also in modern folklore
the kenacho is played.
this instrument like a transverse flute, the musician plays the moxeño
like a normal flute in a low key.
with a high sound are the so-called tropas and mohoceños, originally
pentatonic. The melodies are played in fifth and octave - authentic and
In the Isla
del Sol (Isle of Sun, Lake Titicaca, Bolivia) the farmers play their
songs, which they dedicate to the rain and the harvest, with moxeños
made by great masters in Walata, as the Mamani family.
moxeño is also built in diatonic scale, played by musicians in the
towns, starting in this way a new era for this instrument.
is a kind of zampoña of Ecuadorean origin. It is mutually tuned in two
scales, in pentatonic form. The tones are high and crystal-clear.
is a true companion of the Ecuadorean farmer, mainly played during ritual
celebrations. It is made of reed and condor feathers
touching to listen to a “San Juanito“. The melancholic playing of rondador
and violin reveal the soul of the Quechua people.
is tuned individually – normally in La-menor (A-minor), Re-menor (D-minor)
or Mi-menor (E-minor).
belongs to the zampoñas (pan-pipes), but it is deeper in the tone.
lengths are mutually arranged in two rows like zankas or maltas.
A toyo is
up to 1.70 m long and approximately 40 cm wide.
coordination and skill, playing this instrument demands strong lungs and
like Ukamau, Bolivia Manta, Illapu, Rumillajta, Los Andinos and Alaya
brought the toyo to Europe. It is the only instrument among zampoñas and
sikus , which - due to the size of its reeds – is difficult to put in
The quena is
the most important instrument in the Andes. Its sound is produced by air
vibration. Today, it is played in the whole of Latinamerica and parts of
Europe. It originates from Pre-Colombian cultures, often documented in the
Nazca and Chimu hieroglyphics.
the Spanish word for Quechua “KkénaKkéna“ or “Kjena“ and “Khoana“, which
means “hollow space“.
the Aymara and Inca spread the quena in the Andean countries.
times the instrument was made of human and condor bones. It was tuned in
pentatonic scale. Later on people made quenas of reeds, bovine bones or
wood and tuned them individually - for example in Sol-mayor (G-major),
the most frequent form for the Andean musicians.
zanka is made of 13 reeds, 6 or 7 arranged in two rows. The number of
reeds depends on the theme the musician decides to play.
Most of the
Andean melodies are tuned in Mi and La (E and A). A malta for example is
tuned in Mi (E), a chuli one octave higher. A toyo is played two octaves
deeper than a malta. Based on this, the word tropas developed, due to
the high and deep tones and the length of the reeds.
original word is siku, particularly in the tradition-conscious villages
in the Indian highlands.
Archaeologists discovered that in Pre-Spanish times this instrument was
made of stone and clay (clay until the 16th century).
first 150 years of Spanish rule the zampoñas were made of wood, stone
authentic siku keep the pentatonic scale. You find them in the "Garita
de Lima“, La Paz, Bolivia, where they are built by masters of Walata in
accordance with original or western models. The masters use
measuring-rods called medidas, which facilitate tuning in different
musicians play the chromatic zampoña – as soloists or together with
such as piano, saxophone and others.
herewith contribute a great deal to the development of Andean culture.