ONCE UPON A TIME...
The SARRONCA is known by all kinds of different names, depending on the region where it’s made. RONCADEIRA, ZAMBURRA, ZURRA-BURROS, or just simply RONCA, which is the name used in and around Elvas. The instrument is used to accompany Christmas Carols or the New Year’s Carols known as “Janeiras”.
A tin can, a sheet of strong plastic, some string and a thin cane (preferably one that still has its root attached to it
TOOLS AND ACCESSORIES
A pair of scissors, a penknife and some sandpaper (Nº150)
HOW TO MAKE THE INSTRUMENT
Find a tin can that can hold at least a liter or more of liquid. Tie the cane to the centre of the plastic: if the cane has a root, you’ll find it easier to tie. Now tie the plastic to the can, stretching it every time you wrap the string round. Get your mother or father to help you, or perhaps even your sister or a friend. With their help, you should succeed in keeping the plastic nice and tight. If you do this, you’ll find that the cane remains upright, otherwise it leans to one side and you’ll have to go back to the beginning again. Don’t hurry and remember what they say, “more haste, less speed”.
At dinner-time, when everybody’s sitting at the table, why don’t you bring up the decoration of your SARRONCA as a subject for conversation?
HOW TO PLAY THE INSTRUMENT
The SARRONCA produces a growling or roaring sound, which
is obtained by rubbing the cane slowly up and down, but always using a
wet hand. Don’t squeeze the cane too tightly and make sure that your
hand is always wet. Christmas presents have a different feel to them
when you accompany their opening with the sound of your SARRONCA.
Talking about Christmas. Do you believe in Father Christmas? Often
you’ll find that history and imagination are not objects that you can
touch, like money or toys. Father-Christmas is part of your imagination
and your dreams, and dreaming is all part of the process of growing up.