Lithuanian Academy of Music and Theatre

Practice of Lithuanian Ethnic Music



Subject Title: Practice of Lithuanian Ethnic Music

Taught by: Prof. Dr. Daiva Vyčinienė, Assoc. Prof. Dr. Dalia Urbanavičienė, Assoc. Prof. Evaldas Vyčinas

Acad. Cycle 

ECTS credits



Contact hours



1 semester



Year of study

Weekly lectures/seminars


1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th

1 / 0





Lithuanian and English


10-point scale

Aims and objectives. Strengthening the foundations of the Lithuanian language through traditional singing. Practical acquaintance with Lithuanian ethnic music, traditional music instruments, a lexicon of folk songs (dialects, onomatopoeic words), various forms of collective singing and ethnic choreography.

 Description. A practical training course aimed at familiarizing students with Lithuanian folk songs, roundels and the sutartinės which were inscribed on the Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity on 16th November 2010. The practice of traditional singing is combined with several introductory theoretical lectures on Lithuanian ethnic music, musical instruments, folklore genres, ethnic choreography.

Listening skills: recognition of single words and grammatical forms in the songs of various genres and ethnographic regions; an acquaintance with regional characteristics of traditional singing (voice timbre, articulation, etc.).

Pronunciation skills: vowels, consonants, diphthongs consolidation through singing.

Singing skills: singing songs, the sutartinės and roundels of simple melodies.

Communicative skills: collective singing and playing on skudučiai ‘multi-pipe whistles’ as a means of communication and musical expression; the principles of singing the sutartinės; a monologue and dialogue form (an alternate way of singing, question-and-answer songs and games, formulaic songs of chained structure).

Syncretic expression skills: a syncretic unity of singing and dancing in the ancient genres (danced and played sutartinės, roundels).

Reading list:

Aukštaitijos dainos, sutartinės ir instrumentinė muzika: 1935–1941 metų fonografo įrašai Songs, Sutartinės and Instrumental Musik from Aukštaitija: Phonograph Records of 1935–1941. Edited by Nakienė A. and Žarskienė R. Vilnius, 2004. [with 2 CD]

Lietuvių liaudies dainų antologija The Anthology of Lithuanian Folk Songs.’ Compiled by Četkauskaitė G. Vilnius, 2007. [with 3 CD]  

Metų ratas. Kalendorinių švenčių muzikinis folkloras ir papročiaiA Circle of Seasons. The Musicasl Folklore and Traditions of Calendar Feasts. ’ Compiled by Vyčinienė D. Vilnius, 2008 [DVD with a book]

Račiūnaitė-Vyčinienė, D.  Kokių giedosim, kokių sutarysim? Primer of the sutartinės. Vilnius, 2009. [with CD; performed by sutartinės chanting group “Trys keturiose”]

Račiūnaitė-Vyčinienė D.  Kadu buva, kadujo. Primer of the sutartinės. Vilnius, 2011. [with CD; performed by the sutartinės chanting group “Trys keturiose”].

Urbanavičienė, D. Šokamosios ir žaidžiamosios sutartinėsDanced and Played Sutartinės.’ Vilnius, 2009. [with DVD;  [performed by] ‘Dijūta’, ‘Kūlgrinda’, ‘Lauksna’, ‘Trys keturiose’, etc]

 Attention: This course is recommended to be studied in parallel with the course Bendrasis pradinis lietuvių kalbos kursas at the Vilnius University.