About Us

Ovaa specializes in making Tuvan Instruments both modern and traditional alike.  We can customize instruments to suit your aesthetic needs and design our instruments to compliment your musical style and range.  We became an official business in 2009, when we were awarded a grant from the Tuvan Government.  Ovaa‘s director is Aldar Tamdyn of Chirgilchin fame.  Ovaa also consists of 8 other individuals.

Aldar Tamdyn

Aldar Tamdyn was born in Chadaana, a town in Tuva, and now lives in Kyzyl. He is uniquely talented on the byzaanchy and igil. He was a winner at the International Folk Music Festival in Tuva for best instrumentalist and has been in Chirgilchin since 1996.  Between 2003 and 2006, Aldar was the director of the Tuvan National Orchestra.  Between 1998 and 2008, Aldar built instruments in his home and with the grant awarded in 2009, he now can work among his peers in Ovaa‘s workshop.  He has been acknowledged as Best Instrument Maker of Tuva in 2003, 2005, and 2008, making instruments for Chirgilchin, the Tuvan National Orchestra, Alash, Tyva Kyzy, and other Tuvan musical groups.  In 2009–the Year of the Igil–Aldar’s works were housed in an exhibition at the Tuvan National Museum and won the distinguished award of People’s Master of Musical Instrumentation, an award that only one other individual has earned.  It was also that year when Aldar began hiring stone carvers and teaching them how to build traditional Tuvan instruments.  You can read an interview with Aldar here!

Ayas Irgit was born in Bai-Taiga and is an accomplished stone and wood carver, and has a significant influence on the artistic direction of Ovaa‘s works.

Artysh Mongush

Artysh Mongush recently graduated from the Tuvan College of the Arts and was employed by Ovaa before graduation.  Artysh is a student of the famous Tuvan stone carver Vladimir Salchak (Kazak).

Arbak Khomushku is a very talented young master of stone carving and designs knives.  He regularly works with metals.  He is currently studying the craft of building Tuvan instruments.

Arim Irgit was learning to build Tuvan instruments from his uncle and at Ovaa he specializes in making Tuvan drums (dunguur).

Maya Tamdyn, wife of Aldar is the co-director and administrator of Ovaa.  She also designs specialized cases for the instruments.

  • Ovaa

    Ovaa handmakes traditional and non-traditional Tuvan instruments. We can customize instruments to suit players' needs and aesthetic sensibilities.
  • Contact

    Email: ovaa09 [at] mail.ru