Azerbaijan International

Autumn 2005 (13.3)
Pages 88-90

Sing-Along in Azeri

Children's Global Voices in Song
by Betty Blair


1. "Jujalarim" is the story about the first major performance with Sugra Baghirova at the Decade of Azerbaijani Art in Moscow in 1958. Includes words, music and sound sample. AI 5.4 (Winter 1997).
2. "Azeri Music Abroad: University Choir Performs Azeri Folk Songs" by Aida Huseinova. AI 10.1 (Spring 2002).
3. For music articles, search Aida Huseinova at

Azeri Dance, Azeri MusicFinally, there's a chance to Sing-Along in Azeri on DVDs featuring two of Azerbaijan's favorite songs. Global Voices in Song, produced in 2005, is a series of 6 DVDs with 24 songs.

Left: Hamida Huseinova is the featured performer, singing "Jujularim" and dancing so gracefully on DVD Grade 3. This song by Gambar Huseynli (music) and lyrics by Tofig Mutallibov (lyrics) has been a children's favorite for 50 years. Hamida was accompanied by other members of the Children's Philharmonic under the direction of Farah Shakinskaya.

The project is the creative brainchild of Dr. Mary Goetz of Indiana University. The lessons were produced for classroom instruction - specifically geared for children in Grades 1-6 (ages 5 to 12).

Global Voices is the outcome of Goetz' 10-year quest to build bridges of tolerance and understanding between her own classroom and world cultures. Her travels to various countries, including Azerbaijan, led her to conclude that learning songs and dances from diverse cultures is a unique and powerful way to build bridges of profound understanding and friendship.

Bari Bakh, Beri Bax, Bari Bax
Left: "Bari Bakh" on DVD Grade 5 is sung by the Bari Bakh Vocal Group led by Rauf Babayev. Vocalists include Diana Hajiyeva, Melana Ismayilova, Ulviyya Rahimova, Shola Safaraliyeva, Anar Yusufov, Farid Mailov, Elvin Majidov, Rauf Azimov and Mail Mailov.

Fifteen countries are presented in song: Azerbaijan, Brazil, Cyprus, Ghana, Holland, India, Ireland, Japan, Korea, Mexico, New Zealand, Norway, South Africa, Philippines and Zimbabwe.

Materials for the Azerbaijani samples were prepared by Aida Huseinova, Associate Professor at Baku Music Academy, Ph.D. in Musicology.

The project was supported at Indiana University by the Inner Asian and Uralic National Resource Center (which also offers instruction in Azeri in summer session), and the Center for the Study of Global Change and Office of International Programs of Indiana University. Macmillan and McGraw Hill, among the largest education publishers in the States has included this project in their series Spotlight on Music.

Global Voices includes two songs in Azeri: Jujalarim (My Little Chicks) and Bari Bakh. Jujalarim has been a children's favorite for more than 50 years in Azerbaijan and the region. The catchy melody was composed by Gambar Huseinli and the lyrics are by Tofig Mutallibov. The Children's Philharmonic Choir performs Jujalarim for Grade 3. Bari Bakh is performed by the Bari Bakh Vocal Ensemble in Azerbaijan led by Rauf Babayev. Their performance is featured for Grade 5.

Aida Huseinova, Mary Goetze
DVD Design
Each DVD is designed with four sections: (1) View Song provides a video with children in costume performing the songs. (2) Learn Song offers several options to understand the meaning of the song in English, pronounce the words correctly, learn the melody, and sing-along with instrumental accompaniment, as is done with Karaoke. The Azerbaijani traditional instruments - tar, kamancha, daf and ganun - are featured.

Left: Mary Goetze (right), creator of DVD Music Instructional Project with Azeri Musicologist Aida Huseinova (left) in Kyghyzstan.

(3) Learn Dance shows the separate dance steps for boys and girls. In Jujalarim, little Hamida Huseinova charms viewers with her voice and graceful movement. (4) About Song provides information about the performers, organizers and the songs.

Farah Shakinskaya was the driving force behind the performance by the Children's Philharmonic for Jujalarim. Bari Bakh ensemble shows videos of some of the rehearsals led by the distinguished Azerbaijani musician Rauf Babayev.

To provide more context for the performances, Grade 3 shows the map of Azerbaijan, views of the country with emphasis on Baku, the capital. Grade 5 includes more information about music, arts and the life of children. Short videos show children performing mugham modal music or playing the tar, a stringed instrument. Emphasis is placed on the unique synthesis of East and West traditions in Azerbaijani music.

Visit: where the DVDs may be purchased. Each volume (4 songs) can be purchased for $49. Contact Dr. Aida Huseinova in Baku: or Dr. Mary Goetze in the US:

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