Masguda I. Shamsutdinova's site


Oneness with God

Masguda –

Thank you for a very interesting class. You taught me more than Islam, Ethnicity, and Music. You gave me an insight on life that I’ve been looking for a very long time. You have impacted my life more than I can tell you.
Good luck with your Lullaby Project.
Take care.


From the first moment that we met I felt at ease in your presence.

You struck me as a wonderful, talented, kind and ancient soul. In
reviewing all the video footage I had the pleasure of capturing, the
materials you so generously provide for me, and especially listening to
your music I can only begin to understand the depth, wisdom and beauty
you have to offer.
Masguda, you embody a truly profound gift to our
city and nation.

Sonya Watson (The author of the documentary movie “Masguda – Queen of Tartary”)

Hi, Masguda. Thank you again and again for the wonderful and very
informative talk you gave to my class. Here are the comments
that they made after your class visit. Brava!

"One insight I gained from listening to the speakers was that people from
other countries tend to be more grateful for the blessings in their lives,
and more appreciative for the opportunities they have here. With Masguda, I
was reminded that there are quite a few immigrants who actually take a big
step backward to start a new life."

"Masguda gave me the insight, she will "become a queen" when she speaks English and can fully integrate in our society. When she speaks English fluently, she will no longer miss her home so much because she will feel as if she belongs here.

She painted a powerful picture of the importance of English to
her personal happiness and freedom."

"I loved Masguda's explanation about the paradigm--her window of perception
through her own Tatar language and how hers touched that of the English
language paradigm on which she could find familiarity and
identification--and now how her English paradigm is growing and creating
another window through which to see."

"I loved how Masguda talked about embracing her new life--finding the beauty
in everything. I was struck by her desire to succeed."

"Masguda taught me how a person can see the best in a situation and thrive
even when put in a new and foreign land. I think if I were her and lost all
my prestige, I might fall into self-pity and depression. She hasn't! Even
though I'm sure she must have days when she misses her home, she's listening
to the sounds of her new culture and literally creating a new Song!"

"Masguda had a long story about her hometown. I was curious how much time
she spent in order to speak naturally in front of people. If I were her, I
probably would freak out after 10 minutes."

"Masguda has her music by which she can continue to express herself on the
deeper levels, but still she has had to go from "a queen" to a real live.
I saw such strength and determination, optimism and wonderful hope. I saw a kind heart and how we are not all that different. There is much common ground in our humanity."

Masguda, thank you so much. Clearly, your visit has touched all of the
beautiful people in my class. They will remember you!

Rebecca/Becky Boon( Seattle Pacific University )

About Music

I could feel the dancing and
the "one-ness" with God in your music. How talented you are!

Becky Boon

Dear Maestra Shamsutdinova:

I absolutely love your third symphony
"Genghis Khan" and wonder if it is possible to hear more of your
Symphonic music. . Sincerely yours, Jim Semadeni

Kansas City MO USA

Dear Masguda, if I am the first to tell you your music is beautiful, then I
am ashamed of us Americans--we are way behind!
I have also been listening to Radio Tatarica off and on, too, so
was able to hear Symphony No. 1, too. I enjoyed the program on the radio
station a lot, too, you speak English very well!

I collect Gubaidulina when I can, so I would say that Tatarstan has given the music appreciators a lot, perhaps there is a lot more hidden away? And I hope it too comes out, especially any piano concertos or large symphonic works. By the way, I am not myself a musician but a listener, maybe even a crazy one!

Again, Dear Maestra Masguda, Thank you so much for sharing your music with

Sincerely yours, Jim

Loved your Fables cd. Absolutely beautiful, well done. You should be
scoring movies.

From an Irish fan. Hope you will be recording soon. Take


Hi Masquda,

I want to thank you for a charming and enjoyable meeting. I especially want to thank you for the music. I find your work intriguing, though I have only listened to each CD once. I know I like it but it will take me several more times listening to find out why I like your music. I don’t have your gift at all for music; my enjoyment comes from listening, and listening and listening.
Thank you again,

Paul Schneider, Ed.D.
Washington Academy of Languages

Thank you for your compositions. I have discovered your music through
Radio Tatarica on a new Internet WiFi radio. I will revisit to listen
to excerpts from your album. I immediately felt a connection with your
music and would also agree that the scoring feels very World Cinema
movie type atmosphere.

Wow, this all sounds so exciting. I'm going to go order your CD now.

Dear Masguda,

You are doing a wonderful job with your English--I was very impressed!

I LOVE to hear about Tatars. Now I want to go to Tatarstan after
hearing your show. Maybe it's a repeat, but I didn't hear it before.

I will try to listen on your internet radio, Thank you so
much for helping us broaden our horizons and learn about your culture
and your people--just because Americans don't know about Tatars doesn't
mean we can't learn! Sometimes it might feel lonely trying to be the
teacher though. Keep up the good work!

Marcia Stone

Dear Masguda,
I just heard your program on Tatar Music on The Old Country on KBCS. I
couldn't believe my luck for turning the radio on just in time to hear
it! I have always wondered who were/are the Tatars and where did they
come from, since I see references to "Tartars" often when reading about
the history of Middle Eastern countries. I'm so ignorant I didn't even
know about Tatarstan!
I was fascinated by the history you provided us, but I confess I could
not take it all in fast enough. I wondered if there is a way to hear
the program again. Will you be broadcasting it again anytime, or can
you tell me where I can read the short history of the Tatar people that
you provided with the music? Thank you so much for taking the time to
put that show together!

Marcia Stone

Lullaby Project

Dear Masguda,

Endless Opportunities and I want to thank you for a wonderful morning. You have faced life with such courage and humor, and your story is inspirational for all. Your talents and heart to make the Lullaby Project happen is wonderful. I can’t wait to purchase the multicultural lullabies as well as the American ones. It will be a wonderful connection to someone who is so talented and sensitive.

Endless Opportunities is about life long learning and you are a wonderful example of someone who is on the journey to continuous learning, I know that several of us quickly used our computers to learn more about the Tatars. You inspired our learning in different ways. Your singing also made me want to learn much more about other songs that were part of your growing up. They were hauntingly beautiful!

You have had an amazing journey;-from your small village, to school, to larger Russia, and then the United States. Your schooling and training is a huge accomplishment, but the accomplishment of making a new and meaningful life in a new place is amazing, and your sons should be so proud of you.

I have only listened to one of the CDs and over the weekend I will be really able to concentrate on both of them, it was so kind of you to share you music with me. One of the participants sent me an email Tuesday afternoon and has asked to borrow the music!

Thank you again for such an amazing presentation.


Ellen Hendin

Masguda, Yuri & Gretchen,

Thank you all so very much for your participation in the Health Fair on Saturday. I think the event went over very well and it was great to see you all having such great interactions with kiddos and their parents. Many lovely moments from all of you, thank you.

I hope that you all had fun and that the event will help World Lullaby as a group with new members and with the public appearance in a “health fair” environment.

Best wishes,
David Knott Music Therapist at Children’s Hospital

Dear Masguda,
Thank you for the lovely opportunity to share my lullaby with you and others at the Folk Life Festival. Since you were kind enough to introduce us as mothers, or grandmothers with love and comfort to share through lullabies, I felt very comfortable singing in the Folklife Festival situation. It was also a wonderful opportunity to meet you and hear you sing a Tatar lullaby from Russia.
Again, thank you for including me in your research for original lullaby sounds. I hope that some of them can be helpful or inspirational somehow. Especially since you had to spend such long hours carefully recording so many people.
Talk to you again sometime,
Gretchen Hansen

Dear Masguda,

I thoroughly enjoyed the compilation of the far-reaching lullabies that you were able to piece together. Not only were they enjoyable and soothing to the ear, but they were of historical import as well. I wish to thank you for putting forth a significant piece of artistic work for all to hear.

Jay H.

"I love Masguda's music. Her artistry ranges from delicate nuance to bold statements of life."

Patrick R.
Seattle, WA.

Wonderful article on Masguda Shamsutdinova (PI). We’d love to involve her some way in next May’s Northwest Folklife Festival if she’d be interested. We would love for her to give a presentation on her project, or we could schedule a Lullaby Show, and she could present some of the people she’s recorded. We could also work with her to set up a recording station at the Festival.
Thanks so much.

What a wonderful story! I've sent it world-wide.
If Prof. Shamsutdinova is interested, I can contribute two lullabies
from south Alabama, that my mother's black nurse sang her before 1920,
and that I have sung to my children and grandchildren.

Diana Wright

That was an excellent article. I listened to the lullabies and it was instantly relaxing and soothing. Hope that a CD of these lullabies becomes available. Please wish Dr. Shamsutdinova good luck with her new job and with continuing her lullaby collection.

It is wonderful that Masguda Shamsutdinova knows the power of music.
Music has always been a part of my life--singing,
listening. I even gave a sermon in church titled--"Let all my life be
music." I have collected quotes over the years about music. Here are
a few: "He who sings frightens away his ills."---Michael De Cervantes
in 'Don Quixote.'; "Without music the world would be eternal
night."---Nietzsche; "Music heals people because music is vibration
and the proper vibration heals. ...Music comes into your
body...imagine all the people Louis Armstrong's music heals...all the
people Bach, Beethoven have healed"....Winston Marsalis, director of
Lincoln Center Jazz Orchestra. I have articles quoting doctors in
various hospitals stating that music has a surprising power to heal.
Thanks for this great story about Masguda.

Sincerely (Ms) J. R

I was intrigued and delighted with your story. I used to run a non-profit in the neurosurgery department at Harborview, and am aware of all the wonderful people that work there. I have a Yiddish lullaby (sung in English) by my grandmother that I would like to share with Masguda S.

Rosella Stern

Thank you for the great article about the lullaby collector at

Harborview. My husband and I are musicians who play traditional

music from the Balkans. I have forwarded you article to a friend of

ours from Bosnia who is the head psychiatrist at Harborview. She may

have some Bosnian lullabies to add to the collection.

Sandra Dean

What Shamsutdinova is doing is marvelous!!

I was just pondering lullabies the other day, after hearing one in a movie and noticing the universality of the song and how most lullabies make me feel simultaneously sad and...for lack of better words...protected, cherished. Perhaps the sadness is reminiscence for those few years in life when mama can make anything come right.

I studied music from early childhood until my 20's, and often notice movie sound tracks and general background sounds in ways that others might not. I can't help but believe that Shamsutdinova's research is going to tell us things that are already well known by many, but that will come as a great surprise to anyone who's never paid attention to how music can permeate our lives.

Darcy Jayne
Covington, WA
Please share this web site about music therapy with Masguda Shamsutdinova.

Healing through music should be a part of every patient's recovery process.

Jan Edwards

Thank you for the wonderful article on Masguda and her story about music and healing. While reading your article I remembered an event in my own life and I thought that I would pass it on. I am co- pastor of All Saints Episcopal Church in Rainier Valley. When I was in seminary I spent a summer working in Bellevue Hospital in New York City. The purpose was to learn skills to help heal and to help others die with peace. On my first week of training my buzzer went off and I reported to the main station. I was told to go immediately to a certain room where a woman was in great need. I went to the room, a bit fearful myself, and found the room full of medical attendants and nurses. An African American woman was thrashing around in her bed and was very agitated. One man was trying to hold her down. I was asked if I could help. Not knowing what to do, I asked everyone to leave. I then held the woman in my arms and sang the old spiritual Swing Low Sweet Chariot. I am shy about singing but it seemed the right thing to do. The woman immediately nested into my arms and closed her eyes. She rested. When she seemed asleep, I left the room. I learned later that she died about 10 minutes after I had left. She passed sweetly into the good night. I will never forget that moment.

Hello! My name is DC Donohue. I live in Portland, OR and this morning I read about your lullaby project online. This is such good work! Thank you for undertaking it!
I have kids and work with kids and I have been very interested in the nature of lullaby and I am grateful for your gift of collecting the songs.
Maybe we will meet some day.
Be well!

DC, Portland


Well done!! How absolutely wonderful that you are using your gifts and inclinations to make something good happen in the world! I would like to have a copy of your cd. How may I purchase one?
Tell me about Seven Grains of Love (masguda’s music for chamber orchestra - M.Sh.I.), please.
I wonder where this lullaby comes from--it is one I sing to the babies in my care when They Will Not Go To Sleep!

This is the day we give babies away
With a half a pound of tea.
If you know any ladies who want any babies
Just send them around to me.

Are you familiar with the term "Hostile Lullaby"? I love this idea! It is so great for a tired mama to make this joke while her baby just won't go to sleep and the baby appreciates the song as well, even if (or because) he does not understand the words!

I have four children I am taking care of today and they are all asleep, thank goodness! Everyone has a cold and is feeling poorly. I sang "Hush little baby, don't say a word--Mama's gonna buy you a mocking bird" to them while they fell asleep. This is such important work! And it is really good that you are making art of it!

If you are ever in Portland, I would like to meet you.

Be well.
DC, Portland

Dear Masguda,

I think the hostile lullabies acknowledge the dark side of human
nature--allow the mother to express her destructive energy in a loving,
humorous way. The lullabies are sung sweetly so I don't think the
children are actually frightened--they hear the tone, feel the
closeness of the breathing, warm mother and the mother herself is
actually soothed, made more relaxed physically, by singing those
destructive words. These aren't everyday lullabies--they are the
occasional lullabies of a tired, frustrated and desperate woman. And
they take the pressure off like the valve on a pressure cooker--so that
aggressive energy can be released safely. It's really quite wonderful
and it must have been a wise, wise woman (maybe a grandmother!) who
came up with the idea originally. Perhaps it was a gift from
Grandmothers to their daughters. My daughters certainly know this song
and will always remember it. I really do hope they remember it when
mothering gets rough, as of course it will. In our culture we don't
want to look at the hard part of mothering, the dark mother. But we
ignore her at our peril! If we try to proceed as if all were good and
light, that darkness will certainly emerge in destructive and
inappropriate ways. You would do a great service to spread the hostile
lullabies around! I teach this one to women whenever I can.
Listen: When I am taking care of other women's babies in my home and
we have a rough day, my own children and I joke about putting "FREE"
signs on them and putting them out on the parking strip of grass in
front of our house so that passersby might know the babies are
available at no charge. Because of the lullaby we even imagine putting
a tea bag into each of the babies' hands! Of course we would never do
this! The babies don't understand and it puts us all in a much better
mood so that we can continue our day. It just allows us to acknowledge
out loud that we're having a hard time and that is enough to change the
energy of it. Thank goodness! Without humor all would be lost!

Good luck!

There is a Chinese word "chi" that might be what the healer was talking
about. It is the energy of the universe that a healer can channel
through herself and toward the person with disease. I have friends who
practice this healing as well--it's wonderful.
I like your idea of disconnecting neurons of wakefulness. It's a
little like those rough Norwegians banging the wall with the table leg!
If you're really scared, sleep might start to seem like a pretty safe
alternative to being awake.
Did you have any babies Masguda?
I am enjoying our correspondence!

Thank you!


How wonderful! Thanks for including my selection on the CD. My father would have
been tickled. Last month, I found a version of my lullaby in print, but it was
way different from the one I learned from my father and sang to you. That's the
folk process at work--little changes here and there, through the years. I hope
to see you again at Folklife. Are you conducting any of your music around here
anytime soon?


Dear Masguda,
Congratulations on your new citizenship! You are now part of turning America in a better direction.
Thank you for including me in your World Lullaby Project. It was quite enjoyable to meet over forty lovely , bright children at the Children/ s Health Fair, showing some of them sounds and watching them as they listened to the notes the plucked.
With your inspiring determination, you will achieve your dreams.


Dear World Lullaby Singers and Story tellers,

Because of Masguda, our pathshave crossed and I hope we would continue our ission of preserving our disappearing heritage and teach our children to carry on our mission to the next generation.
Thank you for sharing your knowledge with the World.

Yuri Nishiyama