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For artifacts similar to Polish old-fashioned instrument made of willow bark (Polish: "'fujara, fujarka") see: willow flute or folk pipe.
For other uses in Polish language see: fujara in Wiktionary.
Fujara is also a surname worldwide.

The fujara, originating from from Slovakiamarker, is a large and sophisticated folk shepherd's fipple flute of unique design. It is technically a contrabass instrument in the tabor pipe class. Typically 150 to 170 cm long, tuned in G (the keys of A and F are other common versions). It has three tone holes located on the lower part of the main body. The sound is produced by a fipple on the upper end of the main body of the Fujara. The air is led to the fipple by a smaller parallel pipe, called vzduchovod in Slovak, meaning "air channel", mounted on the main body of the instrument. While it is possible to play the fundamental frequency on almost all Fujaras, the normal playing technique is based on over blowing the instrument. Because of its aspect ratio (great length versus small internal diameter), the overtones created permit one to play a diatonic scale using only the three tone holes. The Fujara is played standing, with the instrument held vertically, usually braced against the right thigh.

Technique and Role

The atypical design provides for a deep, meditative timbre. Ornaments are traditionally added to the base melodies, which usually occur in the mixolydian mode. Two common types of ornaments are prefuk, the rapid over blowing of a single note, from the , to over blow; and rozfuk, a descending cascade of overtones, from the , to scatter.

Traditionally, the Fujara was played for recreation, usually by shepherds. Today, the Fujara has moved from the fields to the stage at folklore festivals in Východnámarker and Detvamarker, both towns in Slovakia. The instrument has also left Slovakia and is played all over the world, especially in Western Europe and North America, among aficionados of native flutes. Despite this, the Fujara has yet to gain popularity or much recognition outside of Slovakia. Most often the Fujara is a solo instrument, but ensembles of two or three Fujaras have been known to exist, such as the Kubinec family or the Javorová Húzva trio. The Fujara was included in the UNESCOmarker list of Masterpieces of the Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity in 2005.

UNESCO has also provided a web page showing information about the Fujara, but it "has no official status":

See also

  • Tabor pipe for other 3-hole folk flutes
  • Willow flute for another overtone-based folk flute
  • Koncovka, another Slovakian overtone flute
  • Kalyuka, Russian overtone flute


  1. Budownictwo drzewne i wyroby z drzewa w dawnej Polsce, vol. 2, Zygmunt Gloger, Warszawa, 1909.
  2. Słownik języka polskiego, vol. 1, Wydawnictwo Naukowe PWN, Warszawa, 1993.
  3. Ancestry.Com

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