The most characteristic sound in traditional folk music from the Appenzell region is probably that of the stringed dulcimer, played with a pair of hammers. The typical local version has 25 sets of strings or courses, each producing one or more tones. The task of building one of these instruments requires skill and flair – as shown by Werner Alder. You can watch him make his exquisite dulcimers, and hear their fine sound, at his workshop in Herisau. You’ll also learn about the history of the instrument, which arrived here in the Middle Ages – possibly from Persia. The bright, jangling tone of the instrument suits traditional folk music perfectly – but also sits well with other musical styles such as modern jazz.