Have you ever heard of an ocarina? How about a teacarina? Well today you are going to learn a bit about what an ocarina is and the big guy who likes them so much.
The ocarina is a wind instrument much like a flute only shaped more like a sweet potato to give it a unique sound. They are mostly in the shape of animals and birds. They have been around for thousands of years as early as 5000 BC in India. Fast forward a few thousand years of progress to 1527. At this time a group of Aztec dancers and musicians performed using the Ocarina in Charles V court. This performance was well received and the group then performed all around Europe.
In Rome a baker saw this performance and started to make them as a novelty toy. Then in the 19th century a musician by the name of Guiseppe Donati reshaped the ocarina into its current form thus giving it accurate pitch and an extended range of notes. Fast forward a few hundred years to the 1990′s and the release of the Legend of Zelda, in this classic video game the hero Link uses and Ocarina to call upon the wind in his travel, solving puzzles and adventuring about. This brings about a new interest int he instrument and brings us to current times. For a more detailed look at its history look here.
We had the pleasure of trying out STL Ocarina’s advanced Ocarina, Nightingale. This ocarina is a bit larger then the standard but has 12 holes for more control of your notes and pitch it is tuned in the key of C Major and has a pitch range of 13 notes. Also since it is bigger it is more ideal for larger hands. My husband is always complaining about things being too small for him to use regularly.
There is a very cool Nightingale gift set STL has on sale right now where you get the advanced Ocarina, a protective bag and a music book all for less than $70. Would make a good gift for a gamer or a musician or any experience.
A new ocarina design made by STL is the teacarina. This ocarina is also a functional tea cup. This adds and interesting dynamic to tea time. This is a functioning ocarina as well as a tea cup. I would suggest not having hot tea in the cup while playing the instrument though. What I find interesting is since the teacarina is made of clay the heat from your beverage will change the teacarina ever so slightly after usage so playing the teacarina after drinking from it will sound different then playing it in its neutral state.
The ocarina is a neat little instrument that can fit in your pocket and can be purchased in many different iterations from basic to advanced. I think all children should have a love and understanding of music. If it is not something they are good with it is understandable. The ocarina is an interesting way to teach kids how to read music as well as continue a life long love of music.