HRVATSKI ISELJENICKI ZBORNIK 2002.
CROATIAN EMIGRANT ALMANAC 2002
ANUARIO PARA LA EMIGRACION CROATA 2002
The Lirica - A Traditional Musical Instrument of the Croatian Adriatic
Among traditional Croatian musical instruments, an exceptional place is heldby a string instrument know in the Adriatic area as the lira, lirica or, inthe southern, Dubrovnik, area as the lijerica. It is a solo instrument whichmost often accompanies a dance, less frequently singing. This instrumentwas user by traditional performers in north-eastern Istria, on the northAdriatic islands (in particular on Losinj, Rab, Silba, and Olib), on all ofthe Dalmatian islands, around Makarska, in the Neretva valley, aroundDubrovnik, on the Peljesac peninsula, in the Zupa and the Konavli. ElsieDunin, an American student of ethnic music and dance, who is of Croatianorigin, mentions the lirica along with the poskocica dance as the only formof the informal traditional dance of Croatians in California.In the living musical tradition at the beginning of the 21st century, thelirica is in use in the Dubrovnik area, in the Konavli, on the Peljesac, andon the islands of Mljet and Lastovo. The playing of the lirica has died outon the other Dalmatian islands, but there are attempts to revive it. TheSchool of Folklore run by the Croatian Heritage Foundation (Hrvatska maticaiseljenika) is the place where, under the expert guidance of Professor VidoBagur one can learn to play the lirica. A festival of the lijericaperformers was held in Cavtat in November 2001. It was organized by afolklore group from Pridvorje. We believe that this traditional Croatianinstrument will continue to live in the hands of the youth which love tostrike it, "ring" it, and briskly dance to its tune.
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