The Rogue Speaks:
Hurrah for Jenny's Alphabe-Thursday! We have really stretched our minds today, haven't we, students! So many Zs to pick from! Hahahaha! Well, here is what I know about the ZITHER:
Who can forget that poignant scene in Dr. Zhivago where the young girl (Zhivago's daughter by Lara) is walking away at the end of the film carrying her zither? Did you know it was a zither?? Well, it is also called a dulcimer, or an autoharp.
The zither is Germany's national instrument. If you have ever seen the classic noir film, The Third Man, the entire score is played on a zither, by a gentleman named Anton Karas.
The strings on a zither are the same length as the sounding board, a flat shallow box. It is played with the left hand on the frets, while the right hand plucks the strings using a thumb piece called a plectrum. The zither can be played on a table, or across the player's knees.
The zither is a very old instrument that is actually mentioned in the Bible, in the book of Daniel. The earliest form known is a Chinese instrument dating from 433BC.
"Mother" Maybelle Carter, of the famous Carter Family, was a zither player. Daughters, Sara and June(the wife of Johnny Cash)were also very accomplished on the zither.
The zither is not an easy instrument to learn to play. It takes real dedication, hours of practice, and a GOOD teacher. I don't think I want to try it! I play the piano, the recorder, and the harmonica, but my favorite instrument is the COMB!!
I hope you have enjoyed my "Z" post. Next week we start over with "A"! Oh, the possibilities!