Music Of The Silk Road

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Episodes

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197B01A Journey Through Turkey19970615

Eight programmes in which Sara Nutall explores the traditional music of the great trade route that linked China to the West in the Middle Ages.

1: `A Journey through Turkey'.

From the Byzantine city of Constantinople and south-eastwards across central Anatolia, visiting a wedding in the high pastures, `caravanserais', and a rare public performance of the `Dance of the Dervishes' in Konya, the centre of the Mevlana Sufi order.

197B02Armenia And Azerbaijan19970622

Eight programmes exploring the traditional music of the great trade route that linked China to the West in the Middle Ages.

2: `Armenia and Azerbaijan'.

On the second stage of the journey following in the footsteps of Marco Polo and the camel traders, Ruth Davis and Sara Nuttall plays songs and dances of the Armenians, Kurds and Azeris.

197B03Shepherds And Storytellers19970629

Eight programmes exploring the traditional music of the great trade route that linked China to the West in the Middle Ages.

3: `Shepherds and Storytellers'.

Following in the footsteps of Marco Polo on the trade route from the Mediterranean across Central Asia to China, Ruth Davis and Sara Nuttall introduce traditional songs and dances from medieval Baghdad, Persia and Turkmenistan.

197B04Uzbekistan19970706

Eight programmes exploring the traditional music of the great trade route that linked China to the West in the Middle Ages.

4: `Uzbekistan'.

Journeying from west to east across Central Asia, Sara Nuttall travels through Uzbekistan, visiting the ancient blue-tiled cities of Bokhara and Samarkand, with their mosques, seminaries, palaces and tea-houses.

The music she hears includes `shash-maqam', the court music of the Emir, and folk dances and a wedding procession.

And in Tashkent, the capital, leading folk singer Monajat Yulchieva performs an emotional `appeal to God' with words by the 15th-century Uzbek poet Alisher Navoi.

197B05Uzbeks, Tajiks And Afghans19970713

Eight programmes exploring the traditional music of the great trade route that linked China to the West in the Middle Ages.

5: `Uzbeks, Tajiks and Afghans'.

In the leafy suburbs of Tashkent, the capital of Uzbekistan, Turgun Alimatov's recreation of the sato, the traditional Uzbek bowed lute, and the Uigur songs of Abdelaziz Hashimov.

Then, across the border to a private music party in the ancient city of Khojend in northern Tajikstan.

And, further south, John Baily introduces religious and wedding songs and dances from Afghanistan.

197B06The Karakorum Mountains19970720

Eight programmes exploring the traditional music of the great trade route that linked China to the West in the Middle Ages.

6: `The Karakorum Mountains'.

A look at the exotic origin myth of Kashmir, with its interplay of Muslim and Hindu influences.

Colin Huehns plays polo music and extrovert love songs from Chitral, Gilgit and the Hunza valley in northern Pakistan, surrounded by some of the highest mountains in the world.

197B07Across The Mountains Into China19970727

Eight programmes exploring the traditional music of the great trade route that linked China to the West in the Middle Ages.

7: `Across the Mountains into China'.

Sara Nuttall introduces sitar music and a love song from Badakhshan in the High Pamirs and throat-singing from the Altai Mountains - the cradle of the Mongols, who dominated the whole of Central Asia in the 13th century.

And Colin Huehns introduces some of the exuberant music and sounds he heard in the Chinese province of Xinjiang, with Islamic-influenced `makam' as well as `erhu karaoke' and mouth-organ busking.

197B08The End Of The Journey19970803

The merchants and Buddhist teachers who made their way from Central Asia across the Pamir Mountains to China carried musical instruments.

Sara Nuttall presents an improvisation for the pipa - a pear-shaped lute whose strings were originally made of silk.

Plus Buddhist and Taoist ritual music played on the guanzi - a shawm - and a warlike ballet from the court of the T'ang dynasty reconstructed by Laurence Picken.