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Shehnai is a double-reed conical oboe of North India. Although it is referred to as a double-reeded instrument it is actually a quadruple-reed instrument. This is because it has two upper reeds and two lower reeds. The instrument has a wooden body with a brass bell. The reed is attached to a brass tube which is wrapped in string. The shehnai has eight holes but it is common to find some of the holes partially or completely occluded with wax.


The shehnai is an aeróphone which is thought to attract good luck, and as a result, is widely used in northern India for marriages and processions. For this motive one finds individuals playing the shehnai in temples and this makes it an essential component of any North Indian wedding ceremony. In the past, shehnai was part of the traditional ensembles of nine instruments found at royal courts.


Learning shehnai is complex since it is the most sensitive and intricate Indian musical wind instrument. It is actually the way the lips and tongue play upon the reed mouthpiece and the manner in which the holes are opened or closed with the fingers along with tremendous lung-power. Thus a trainer helps their trainee with the correct guidance in procedure to attain breath-control and of course the regular practice and intellect of the performer which renders the semitone and quarter tones very effectively and attractively.

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