The Canadian Art Database

Inuit Throat and Harp Songs

Eskimo [Inuit] Women's Music of Puvirnituq [Povungnituk], Nunavik [Arctic Quebec].
Canadian Music Heritage Collection.

Singers: Alasi Alasuak,Lucy Amarualik,
Alaci Tulaugak, Nellie Nungak and Mary Sivuarapik,
Puvirnituq [Povungnituk], Nunavik [Arctic Quebec]
Producer: Marvin Green
Recording engineer: Paul Hodge

throat singers

photo: front row, left to right: Alasi Alasuak, Lucy Amarualik, Alaci
Tulaugak, Nellie Nungak and Mary Sivuarapik; back row (producers) Marvin
Green and Paul Hodge.



This recording presents the katadjait, or throat songs, of the women of Povungituk, a village on the eastern shore of Hudson Bay in the Canadian Arctic. Katadjait are duets performed by women who stand close together to produce gutteral vocal sounds through voice manipulation and breathing techniques.

In some communities katadjait have texts with intelligible meanings; elsewhere "meaningless" syllables are used. The women perform standing face to face, normally in pairs (although occasionally a group of four women perform together). The Povungituk katadjait do not have meaningful texts, but the unintelligible syllables known as "vocables".

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