Musical Instruments on Stamps – Europa 2014 – Portugal
The Year 2014 theme for EUROPA stamps is Musical Instruments. Three stamps from Portugal, Madeira & Azores were issued on Musical Instruments on 09.05.2014.
The “Gaita-de-Foles” (Bagpipe), in the Miranda Plateau – northeast of mainland Portugal was until recently made by hand, using typical materials from local agro-pastoralism. It is regarded throughout Europe as a rare specimen of this type of aerophone, for having kept its medieval pattern and peculiar tuning precepts.
The “Brinquinho”, or “Bailhinho”, is a percussion instrument that became a hallmark of the Madeira Archipelago. Visually appealing, it is composed of cloth dolls (usually seven figures, both male and female), dressed in traditional clothing, bearing castanets and ribbons, arranged at the extremities of a rattle-like cane, in two or more circular series of unequal diameter
Azores – Viola
The viola must have reached the Azores inside the luggage of the first settlers coming from the Continent. Then, in the islands, it became a chordophone of distinctive features, called “Viola da Terra” (Viola from the homeland). It stands out for its metallic double strings, which give it a more pure sound, and for its vibrant timbre, sometimes making a melody sound like a cry.