April 20, 2019

Maqom: The Soul of Uzbeki People

Maqom music singer, Munojot Yulchiyeva, Uzbek personality in the world of Art.

By Roy Lie Atjam.

The First International Maqom Festival will be held in the city of Shakhrisabz, Uzbekistan, the birthplace of the great commander, Sahibkiran Amir Temur, founder of the Timurid Empire. The festival dates 6-10 September 2018.

The Maqom International Festival has been established by H.E. Shavkat Mirziyoyev, President of the Republic of Uzbekistan. Decree of the President 3656, April 6, 2018. The festival is expected to widely popularize one of the famous genres of classical- and musical art of People of the East.

As of 2018 onward, the festival will be held every other year in the  city of Shahrisabz, one of the ancient cities of the Great Silk Road. Coordination is in the hands of the Ministry of Culture of the Republic of Uzbekistan, the Uzbek National Center of the Makom Art, other stakeholders and under the patronage of UNESCO.

The following events are held at the scope of the Festival:

  • Scientific-practical conference, on the topic “Music art of maqom and its role in the world civilization”
  • Solo concerts of Uzbekistan and World maqom masters;
  • Competition of ensembles, singers and instrumentalists. As for the lyrics, they are built on ancient folk poetry and lyrical works of oriental classical literature. Hafiz, Jami, Bedel, just to mention a few. Uzbek traditional maqom instruments are the tanbur and the doira. Maqom styles: Khorezem- and Bukhara maqom cycle.The origin of many maqom names is Persian, indicating the considerable influence of the Iranian culture throughout the Middle East in the formative period of this musical system. Maqom touches the soul of the Uzbeki people, it is their life: anniversaries, weddings, holidays and various other social events.
  • One reason for launching the First International Maqom Festival is intended to sensitize and capture the attention of the youth and the general public. Making them aware of the potential of Maqom. Its artistic, vim and vigor as well as its esthetic musical heritage. Additionally, Maqom has the capability of fostering relations of friendship between nations.
  • An acclaimed Uzbekistan Maqom performer is Munojot Yo‘lchiyeva her voice is celestial. Such a Diva could only be found in Uzbekistan.

Uzbekistan Ambassador Khakimov, photography by Naldo Peverelli.

Maqom is regarded as the pinnacle of Eastern music, Not everyone can sing maqom, for that one needs a strong inherent nature and constant training.

  • Maqom is a series of diverse vocal and instrumental pieces. It is an oral –professional music that has been created and composed in the Middle Ages. The maqoms are made up as ways of musical instruments, songs as well as a large cycle, with its own sophisticated melody, sophisticated shape and perfect performing style.
  • Maqom derives from the word “maqam” in the Arabic language and is performed by leading singers, musicians and composers (creators in oral traditions) from the Near and Middle Eastern cultures.
  • Maqoms of the oriental music have been preserved and developed as a masterpiece of the spiritual heritage.
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Photography Courtesy Ministry of Culture Uzbekistan.



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