The balalaika is a string musical instrument made up of a triangular body and three strings. It originated in Russia in the late 19th century. It can be played solo or as part of a balalaika ensemble. It is considered one of the most essential string instruments in Russia, Ukraine, and Eastern Europe.
Types of Balalaikas
Kinds of Balalaikas include the following:
The piccolo balalaika is strung with a wire string on top and gut or nylon string at the bottom.
It is the rarest and the least used type of balalaika.
The prima balalaika is the most common size for balalaikas.
It is tuned to the keys of E-E-A.
It is played using a variety of techniques.
It can also be played using a plectrum, though the practice is not very usual.
The secunda (second) balalaika is slightly larger than the prima model.
It is tuned to the keys of A-A-D.
Just like a piccolo model, it is strung with a wire string on top and gut or nylon string at the bottom.
The alto balalaika is larger than the secunda and prima balalaika.
It is tuned an octave lower than the prima.
Bass and contrabass balalaika
The bass and contrabass balalaika is the largest type of balalaika.
The bass model is tuned to the keys of E-A-D, while the contrabass model is tuned to the same keys only they are one octave lower.
It can be played using a leather pick.
Choosing Balalaikas (Buying tips)
Strings: Choose a balalaika with strings made of nylon instead of steel, as they are more durable and gentler on the fingers.
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