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The Zurna (pronounced zewer-na), like the duduk and Kaval, is a woodwind instrument used to play Anatolian and Middle Eastern folk music. The zurna is a conical oboe, made of apricot wood, and uses a double reed which generates a sharp, piercing sound. Thus, it has historically been played outdoors during festive events such as weddings and holidays. It has 8 holes on the front, 7 of which are used while playing, and 1 thumbhole which provide a range of one octave.
It is similar to the Mizmar. The Zurna is an instrument made from the fruit tree Apricot ( Prunus Armeniaca ). Zurnas are also used in the folk music of the countries in the region, especially Azerbaijan, Armenia, Republic of Macedonia , Croatia, Turkey, Iraq, Greece, Assyria, Iran, Albania, Bosnia and the other Caucasian countries., and has now spread throughout China, and Eastern Europe.
The Zurna is most likely the immediate predecessor of the European Shawm as well as related to the Chinese Suona still used today in temple and funeral music. The Japanese charumera, or charamera, traditionally associated with itinerant noodle vendors is a small zurna, its name deriving from the Portuguese chirimiya. Few, if any noodle vendors continue this tradition and, if any, would undoubtedly use a loudspeaker playing a recorded charumera.
There are several types of zurnas. They all share one and the same sound inductor – the so called kalem – which is actually a very tight (and short) double reed, sometimes made out of wheat leaves. The longest (and lowest) is the Kaba zurna, used in northern Turkey and Bulgaria. As a rule of thumb, a zurna is conical and made of wood.