The hulusi or cucurbit flute is a free reed wind instrument from China. It is held
vertically and has three bamboo pipes which pass through a gourd wind chest;
the center pipe has finger holes and the outer two are typically drone pipes. It is
not uncommon for a hulusi to have only one drone pipe while the second outer
pipe is merely ornamental. The drone pipe has a finger hole, which allows it to be
stopped. Advanced configurations have keyed finger holes similar to a clarinet or
oboe, which can greatly extend the range of the hulusi to several octaves.
The hulusi was originally used primarily in the Yunnan province by the Dai-along with other southern Chinese ethnic groups who called it "bilangdao". It has since gained nationwide popularity, similar to the harmonica in the West. "Improved" versions have been produced outside of the indigenous realms. Like the related free reed pipe called bawu, the hulusi has a very pure, clarinet-like sound.
Although the hulusi is still predominantly performed in China, it has in recent
years been adopted by European composers and performers. Rohan Leach from
England, Rapheal De Cock from Belgium and Herman Witkam from the Netherlands
have all taken the instrument in new directions.
Our hulusi library will allow you to imitate virtually anything that a real hulusi could
play. We recorded intervals for up and down legato articulations in two variants:
normal legato and glissando. We have provided the ability to vary the dynamics
of the instrument to convey a wide, detailed range of expression from pp to ff.
Natural vibrato may be added to the sound at any time. Staccato articulations
provide added realism by means of a round-robin algorithm. Users can reassign
keyswitches and midi-controllers, then save the changes to a user preset. Default
settings are easily restored at any time.(See “Preset” section).