June 11, 2018 / 3:58 PM / 4 months ago

Russia hopes to stir World Cup crowds with musical spoons

MOSCOW (Reuters) - Move over vuvuzela players. The musical instrument to master for this year’s soccer World Cup is the Russian spoon.

Spoons branded "Spoons of Victory", official instrument chosen by Russia for the 2018 FIFA World Cup, are seen being painted at a workshop of designer Rustam Nugmanov in the city of Lyubertsy, outside Moscow, Russia June 7, 2018. Picture taken June 7, 2018. REUTERS/Tatyana Makeyeva

Eight years after South Africans blared away on their plastic vuvuzela horns when they hosted the contest, Russians are hoping fans at the tournament it hosts starting on Thursday will celebrate by clacking their “lozhkas” - spoons that beat out an insistent, but quieter rhythm.

Folk musicians using the traditional instruments - two wooden spoons held back to back and struck by a third - have already become a feature at official receptions.

Slideshow (4 Images)

Less skilled supporters will be able to buy an adapted plastic pair, joined at the end for easier clicking.

Designer Rustam Nugmanov got government backing to produce a line of colored and branded “Spoons of Victory” that have been recognized as the tournament’s official instrument.

“When we were choosing an instrument which is typically Russian and which reflects Russian cultural values, we had a choice of three: a treshchotka (clapper), a shaker and a lozhka,” he said.

They wanted instruments that could knock out a rhythm, without totally dominating the proceedings like the vuvuzelas did before them. They also wanted to avoid the shattering rattling produced by Brazil’s “caxirola” percussion instruments at the championships four years ago.

“That (the caxirola) sounds like a beehive and is a very loud instrument and also does not allow you to clap a rhythm, said Nugmanov. “We have chosen spoons.”

Writing by Andrew Heavens; Editing by Matthew Mpoke Bigg

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