The Rohan Theme and the Fiddle
I’ve been away for a week, but I’m not one to let an interesting subject drop. So here’s more on the fiddle that plays that haunting ‘Rohan’ theme that we hear as the camera pans over the roofs of Edoras. Meanwhile, this came in from Jeremy:
“Howdy there Ringers–
“I’m not sure where “Kereah” and other’s who wrote in and told you about the “Hardinger” fiddle were getting their information from, [they were getting it from the TTT Soundtrack sleeve notes, but I’ve been informed by others that the name of the fiddle is mis-spelled there – Tehanu] but as a long time fan of Scandinavian folk, I can assure you that its a “Hardanger” fiddle, at least in English. In Norwegian, it is referred to as the “hardingfele,” but is universally translated (as far as I’ve ever heard) as “Hardanger”. [It’s the name of a place in Norway, I was further told – T]
“Check out this awesome Hardanger compellation from Northside Records, the primary publishers of traditional Scandinavian music in the U.S.: Noside.com Also, I suggest anything by Annbjørg Lien, an amazing Norwegian fiddler that mostly plays the Hardanger, and plays in both very traditional and fusion styles. She is a true Goddess.
“The Hardanger fiddle, considered the national instrument of Norway (although occasionally played in Sweden and elsewhere), is different from the modern violin in several ways, most notably in its flatter, “Renaissance” style fingerboard (and right-angle neck), and in the row of strings that run underneath the fingerboard, that vibrate sympathetically when the melody strings are played, giving the Hardanger its distinctively stirring, drone-y sound. For more information on the Hardanger, check out this page on the Hardanger Fiddle Association of America’s website I’d love to see the remarkable Rohan theme make Hardanger fans of many LOTR fans.”Posted in Old Spy Reports on January 8, 2003 by Tehanu