Hora lungă

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Hora lungă (Cîntec lung, Rom., literally 'long song'), is a Romanian regional folksong style characterized by the union of a lyrical text and improvisational melody.[1]

Also called hora lunga or horea lunga, (hora here is derived from the Romanian word meaning 'oration').[2]

The singing may be accompanied by a combination of the shepherd's flute, a leaf held between the lips and used as a reed, a bagpipe, and nonnative instruments.


A variant of the doina, the Hora lungă characteristics are: strong instrumental character, very ornamented, and indeterminate content structure.[3] The musician may freely stretch or compress its rhythm, and often will highly ornament each note.


Discovered by Béla Bartók in the Romanian Northern Transylvania counties of Maramureş and Satu-Mare in 1912-1913. Bartók studied evidence of or listened to similar music in central Algeria, Ukraine, and Persia. Subsequent research has revealed similar music found as far west as Albania and Algeria, and as far east as India, Tibet, western China, and Cambodia.[4]




  1. ^ Rahn, Jay (1976). "Text-Tune Relationships in the Hora Lunga Versions Collected by Bartok". Yearbook of the International Folk Music Council (.pdf)|format= requires |url= (help). International Council for Traditional Music. 8: 89–96. doi:10.2307/767384. JSTOR 767384.
  2. ^ "dolmetsch online". Retrieved 2007-01-31.
  3. ^ Bartók. “Romanian Folk Music” (1938) in BBE, p. 155.
  4. ^ "Hora Lunga." Baker's Student Encyclopedia of Music. Ed. Laura Kuhn. Schirmer-Thomson Gale, 1999. eNotes.com. 2006. 31 Jan, 2007 url=http://arts.enotes.com/music-encyclopedia/hora-lunga

See also[edit]

Section of a hora lungá melody transcribed by Bartók: [1]