Trejdeksnis

Trejdeksnis

 

 

Trejdeksnis

On my first trip from Germany to Soviet occupied Latvia (1988) I was introduced to contemporary Latvian culture. I remember being blown away by a music video featuring pop star Leva Akuraters boldly singing, defiantly marching on a ruggedly beautiful beach on the Baltic Sea, and striking a “trejdeksnis” to the beat. I don’t, frankly, remember the song’s melody or lyrics at all, but there was something subversive in Akuraters use of the “trejdeksnis.” For a nation that prides itself on having a “singing” revolution, the “trejdeksnis” could truly be a metaphor for the clash of ancient cultures and the renaissance of cultural pride. For me this simple, ancient musical instrument became a symbol of my people’s past, present and, at the time, still forming identity.

R.G.

Riga, Latvia