Biografie Nicolay Oorzhak


Nikolay Oorzhak was born in December 1949, in the small village Khorum-Dag in western Tuva.
After graduating from high school in 1964, he worked for four years as a shepherd, herding horses, sheep, and cows. There on the steppes, alone with his herds, he started producing sounds like his father and grandfather used to sing. This was Khoomei, or throat-singing. At that time, his only audiences were the horses, sheep, and cows.

"Throat singing imitates the voices of animals,
and sounds created are consonant to sounds of Universe. For me all these sounds are the rhythms
of the whole one”,  says Nikolay 
 From 1968 to 1970 Nikolay served in the army, which was mandatory in Soviet times.
When he returned from military service, he worked as an artist for the local public
theater in Chadaana, Tuva. In 1982, Nikolay caught the attention of the local authorities,
who supported his bid for a professional education. So, in 1983 Nikolay began attending
the Ulan-Ude cultural institute in Buryatia, where he also became Director for Public Theaters. This was also an opportunity to finally open his hidden talent of throat-singing.

In 1989 the First International Festival of Throat-Singing was held in the Tuvan capital of Kyzyl. Nikolay was awarded First Prize for Kargyraa style. At that time he already brilliantly performs  in all the overtone singing (xorekteer) styles: khoomei, kargyraa, sygyt, borbangnadyrezengileer and became a Khoomeiji (Recognized Master of Khoomei) in his country. The same year he and fellow throat-singer Boris Kherly and scientist Zoya Kyrgys founded Ensemble Tuva. Meeting with great success, they toured internationally, including Norway, Sweden, Turkey and Mongolia.

In those days, it was common for such ensembles to include a dramatization of a shamanic ritual, and in addition to singing and playing with Ensemble Tuva, Nikolay portrayed the shaman. Elders often commented that he appeared authentic and suited for this role, and that perhaps he was meant to be a real shaman. Sometimes, after these performances, he felt dizzy and suffered headaches. He sought help from Oleg Toiduk, a well-known shaman. Oleg told him that Nikolay was destined to be a shaman,  and was suffering the effects of
 energies sand talents that he needed to share with others for healing.

In Tuva, shamans often inherit their abilities, and Nikolay was no exception. There were shamans on his mother's side, and her father was a famous shaman in the Sut-Khol region of Tuva. On this basis, Nikolay started his healing way. Observing his progress, in 1998 the pre-eminent Tuvan shamanism scholar Prof. Mongush Kenin-Lopsan invited Nikolay to work for his shamanic society Dungur.

In 1995 Nikolay was invited to India to celebrate His Holiness the Dalai Lama's 60 birthay. He got the Dalai Lama's blessing, which enables him to increase his healing singing abilities. 

“The khoomei together with tungur  creates the integral, 
highest approach to human. There are no any tricks or illusions, 
but the power of the integral sound”