[Back To Music Page]



The domra is a small mandolin sized instrument predominantly used in russian folk bands. Playing the lead melody lines within the band, the domra is often accompanied by balalaikas. The technique used to play the domra is a tremelo technique, where a pick is alternate picked across the strings rapidly. With three plain steel strings, the domra is tuned:

E A D'
where the D' is almost an octave above the first guitar string (the A is the 440Hz A). The domra was developed by the creator of the balalaika - Vasyl Andreev around 1895. My instrument is probably a prima domra.

Tunings (low to high)

Piccolo Domra: B E' A'
Prima Domra: E A D', 440Hz A
Mezzo-Soprano Domra: B E' A', octave below piccolo domra
Alto Domra: E A D', octave below prima domra
Tenor Domra: B E' A', octave below mezzo-soprana domra
Bass Domra: E A D', octave below alto domra


  • The Domra Group of Instruments



    Label inside is difficult to see
    but it's all in russian,
    although the date 07-01-1982 can be made out