The Rudra Veena is an instrument that is rarely heard on the concert stage now, although just two centuries ago it reigned surpreme, and was regarded as the king of all instruments. It has a hollow tubular body called the dandi, on which are placed 24 frets, usually glued to the tube with beewax and resin, although some players also use frets tied to the dandi as in the sitar. There are four main playing strings and three to four drone strings. Attached to the tubular dandi are two hollow resonators made of dried and seasoned pumpkins.
Rudra Veena is the mother of all stringed instruments. In fact, and according to Hindu Myth, Rudra means Shanker or Shiva, the Greater of the universe hence, the instrument is associated with him. It in believed that shiva made the first Rudra Veena & used his own intestines as strings of the same.
Nowadays there are very few craftsmen with knowledge and experience to build professional rudra veena, as being it an extremely exclusive instrument, reserved only for the most devoted interpreters of classical Indian music, the tradition of building it has been lost, and only a few families in India keep its construction’s secrets, lasting this tradition.
Nitai Chandra’s rudra veena are of the finest quality not only for its sound but for the artwork also; many musicians as the renowned Ustad Bahauddin Dagar or Asit Kumar Banerjee are pleased to confirm it.
According to the tradition, and respecting all processes during the instrument’s construction in order to obtain only first quality instruments, the time needed to build a rudra veena is 15-18 months, and its price can be from 2000€ to 3000€ (for different materials, style, carvings…).
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Sound Demo By Ud. Bahauddin Dagar
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