Jodlerfests (Yodeling Festivals)

Summer (end of May through September)
Regional festivals of the art of yodeling are held in the summer months throughout the northern German region of Switzerland. Every two years a national Jodlerfest is held. In 1991, it was in Engelberg and brought together not only yodelers from all over the country but also about 150 players of the Alphorn, a 10- to 15-foot wooden horn with a haunting sound.
The regular annual festivals are held outdoors and feature yodeling clubs, and sometimes soloists, who usually yodel without musical accompaniment. The themes of the songs are related to the mountains, the cows, and the herdsman's life and loves.
Technically, yodeling is a type of singing in which high falsetto and low chest notes alternate. It is supposed to have originated in Switzerland as a way for Alpine cowherds to call from meadow to meadow or to urge on their cows. However, yodeling is also found in other mountain areas in China and North and South America, and among the Aboriginal people of Australia as well as various ethnic groups in Africa.
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Holidays, Festivals, and Celebrations of the World Dictionary, Fourth Edition. © 2010 by Omnigraphics, Inc.