Karakalpakstan is an autonomous region of Uzbekistan bordering Turkmenistan. The famous Aral Sea partly belongs to this region. It is the region of the bakshi, or epic singers. This tradition, in which epic stories and poems are recited accompanied by music, dates back to the 13th century. It takes an enormous amount of knowledge to sing all those stories and poems by heart. The vocals are characterized by a high degree of overtone and undertone techniques. The aim of the “Winds of the Aral Sea” project is to keep alive and renew the epic tradition of this region.
From an early age, Bakhsi Azada Qarlibaeva was interested in music. Despite her young age, she is already recognized as “Bakhshi” thanks to the vast repertoire of oral epics from the region that she performs with great taste and personal interpretation. She has won numerous awards and is one of the few artists from the region to be recognized for her work on Karakalpak culture and her international performances.
Gumisay Berdikhanova is one of two musicians from Karakalpakstan who play the four-string ghirjek. She is a shogird (private student) of master musician Ghairatdin Otemuratov and studied at the State Art Institute of Uzbekistan. She participated in numerous international projects across Central Asia.
This duo evokes the poems, handed down from generation to generation, from master to student, in a personal and contemporary style.
- Bakhshi Azada Qarlıbaeva : vocals, olamo’ynoq dutar (lute)
- Gumisay Berdikhanova: ghirjek (point violin)