18″ BENDIR (frame-drum) with tuning system
"In the rhythm of music, a secret is hidden." - Rumi
This is a premium musical instrument, a replica of the ancient frame-drum known with many names throughout time and space, such as bendir or tympanon. It is one of the oldest instruments of human-kind, as it has been around since prehistoric times.
LUTHIEROS 18" Bendir is equipped with a unique air tuning system that enables the modern musician to tune it on different tones, by simply adding or extracting air around the frame. It has 18" diameter (45 cm) and 10 cm depth, adding a great set of extra frequencies to your playing. It can produce a great variety of tones thanks to the spreading of shock waves moving across the skin,
Bendir, as a frame drum, is the oldest and most common kind of drum, and it was used in Ancient Egypt, Mesopotamia, etc. What's more, it is used until today during the special mystagogic ceremonies of the Sufi, where the use of music, rhythm, and dance are essential elements to reach particular states of consciousness.
Bendir can be played to accompany ancient and modern instruments, providing depth in the sound of a music band. It can also be used independently, to provide a mystic sound background to special events and moments.
“[...] Rhythm finds its way into the secret places of the soul.” - Plato
Historic Accuracy & Playability
It's not a battle. It's about finding the right balance.
^ A maenad is dancing as she plays the tympanum. She looks down, avoiding the Dionysus' eyes, as she steps forward. Attic Red Figure, 440-430 BC. Attributed to the Curti Painter. Harvard University Art Museums.
< A maenad is dancing as she plays the tympanum. She looks down, avoiding the Dionysus' eyes, as she steps forward. Attic Red Figure, 440-430 BC. Attributed to the Curti Painter. Harvard University Art Museums.
Bringing Ancient Artifacts Back to Life
To handcraft premium ancient-replicas with a focus to the modern musician, you have to research a lot, analyze hundreds of ancient depictions, build a lot of prototypes, test them with great musicians, etc.
And all of these, to conclude to meaningful compromises that have to be made, that are both deeply justified and make sense in terms of usability/playability. All in all, our ultimate goal is to serve the modern musician, and to bring ancient artifacts back to life as fully functional musical instruments.
Manufactured at the premises of the ancient Europos (Northern Greece) by a family of musicians and luthiers, the LUTHIEROS 18″ Bendir is made using natural materials available during the antiquity. All parts are made of quality wood with great musicality, while the soundboard is made of premium animal skin. Final touches are added by using fabric, while the tuning system is the only one where we use modern materials.
This ancient artifact was evolved to become a modern musical instrument ready to be used by both amateur and professional musicians. For all the minor (but very important) alterations, top-notch technologies were used during the prototyping phase (such as 3d Modeling and rapid prototyping) as part of University-based research by members of LUTHIEROS family. Key collaborations include the International Hellenic University and the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki.
Di Giulio, A. M. (1991). The Frame Drum as a Dionysian Symbol in Scenes on Apulian Pottery, RIdIM/RCMI Newsletter, Vol. 16, No. 1.
Doubleday, V. (1999). The Frame Drum in the Middle East: Women, Musical Instruments and Power, Ethnomusicology, Vol. 43, No. 1.
Landels, J.G. (1999). Music in Ancient Greece and Rome, London/New York.
Various authors (2012). Greek Musical Instruments: Research in visual and written sources (2000 B.C. - 2000 A.D.), Teloglion Foundation, Aristotle University of Thessaloniki.
West, M.L. (1992). Ancient Greek Music, Oxford.
Our research is featured in major media:
Someone you can trust
We love what we do, and we deeply care about our musicians.
It's about time to experience our top-notch customer care.
"All of these beautiful lyres, lovingly hand-crafted by Luthieros are indeed, divine artifacts, reintroduced into the modern world… " - Michael Levy, a world-renowned lyre player. Read his extended review here.
"Electric guitars are very often provided with vibrato, tremolo or whammy bars. That concept was in fact invented by the ancient Greeks twenty four hundred years ago. Kithara was a musical instrument very popular during the Golden Age of Ancient Greece. This is a reproduction that was made by the Greek master luthier Anastasios Koumartizis of Luthiers Music Instruments." - Peter Pringle, a professional Canadian musician, and well-known ancient instruments player. Watch his extended video review here.
"Can't be happier with my lyre! Learning how to play this amazing piece of art! The lyre has amazing finishes and you can feel it's made with love and skilfull hands." - Jaume Gual Bennàssar, Balearic Islands, Spain (verified review through Etsy.com).
Our family is world-renowned for its dedication, love and care. Here are some amazing reviews concerning our whole product range!
"It’s handcrafted with such care and the materials are fine and well chosen. It arrived to us safely all the way from Greece and we were able to track it all the way so we always knew what was happening." - Rachel Loeb, Los Angeles, U.S.A. (verified review through Etsy.com).
"Amazing company! I was very skeptical about ordering an instrument online but it was packaged very safely and arrived in such a timely manner! Luthieros also has some of the best communication skills I've ever encountered with a company, I had many questions that were all answered with great detail shortly after I asked them." - Batherus Batherus, New York, U.S.A. (verified review through Etsy.com).
"The Koumartzis familia have been making replicas of ancient Greek instruments for many years, used by famous lyre players. They also contribute to their musical passions through research and collaborations." - Ancient History Encyclopedia. Read the extended tribute here.
"My ancient Kithara, handcrafted by Luthieros Music Instruments, is for me a very interesting challenge. As an instrument is both old and new. It carries a history of many centuries and at the same time_ it is a very modern challenge that requires a creative approach to musical archetypes. After many experiments […] I discover that this instrument has but many extensions and features that are not noticeable at first glance. The construction is both sturdy and thin, and made of quality woods, which are eclectic, stylish and durable." - Ross Daly, a professional world musician of Irish descent.
"Absolutely fantastic! A truly wonderfully crafted instrument. I can’t put it down. It feels wonderful to play and is transporting me back in time." - Sarah Tilsley, West Sussex, U.K. (verified review through Etsy.com).
18″ BENDIR (frame-drum) with tuning system