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What are Hokema Kalimbas and Sansulas?

The Kalimba belongs to the lamellophones, which have been common in Africa for over 3,000 years: Tongues made of metal are attached in rows to a wooden body, which produce different tones when plucked. There are forms with and without resonators, for example calabashes.

In the 1950s, the Kalimba was adapted to European musical practice. Hokema Kalimbas are available in a wide variety of tunings and models, from the intuitively playable A minor to the C major scale. The company also developed the patented Sansula with a free-floating wooden body.

Hokema Kalimbas: instruments for everyone

Whether you play Hokema Kalimbas according to notes or intuitively and freely — you will always elicit feather-light tones with a high proportion of overtones and thus create an atmospheric acoustic carpet.

Beginners without previous musical experience

Really anyone can play the Kalimba! This is due to its diatonic tuning. A minor in particular is ideal for beginners who are just getting to know the instrument and want to start playing straight away. There are no wrong notes in this tuning. This is why children also enjoy playing the Kalimba.

Music enthusiasts

The Kalimba is also suitable for those who can already read music or want to learn how to read music. Play either according to the Kalimba notation or directly according to notes as you know them from piano or recorder books. Just note that the tongues are usually not arranged in a linear way. Instead, a scale builds up from the inside to the outside, alternating between right and left.

Professional musicians

More and more professional musicians are discovering the Kalimba or Sansula for themselves. It can now often be heard in jazz, blues, and world music. At Hokema you will find Kalimbas in different tunings, for example in C major and G major, but also chromatic and pentatonic. To make Kalimbas and Sansulas audible on stage, they are also available in an E version.

Did you know that Kalimbas can be professionally tuned and also retuned? Knowing how to tune the Kalimba and Sansula is a must for musicians.

Therapeutic work

Hokema products are also ideal for active music therapy, where patients express themselves through the instrument. Relaxation educators use the Kalimba for yoga and other music-assisted procedures.

What products does Hokema offer?

Since 1985, the family business Hokema has been manufacturing high-quality Kalimbas, Sansulas and Pocket Marimbas. With Hokema products you can rely on tested quality.

Hokema Kalimba

The Kalimba is an easy-to-play instrument with a warm, mellow sound. The instrument has a multi-sensory effect as it transmits its vibrations directly to the playing hands. This has a relaxing and stimulating effect — both on the players and the listeners.

Hokema Sansula

The Sansula is our further development of the Kalimba. Here, a small wooden body is attached to an oval sound membrane. This produces louder tones and a somewhat different sound. Sansulas are becoming more and more popular. Since their invention in 2001, they have made Hokema products well-known and sought-after throughout Germany.

Pocket Marimba

The xylophone for your pocket has its origins in Africa and South America. The Pocket Marimba can be rolled up and taken anywhere. Simply unroll it on the table and play with the mallets. The natural sound harmonises with other instruments but is also convincing solo.

Koshi Chimes

Eight bars are hidden in the bamboo body of the inconspicuous Koshi chimes. Their special tunings are dedicated to the four elements and are meant to make energies flow.

Zenko Handpans

Tongue drums take us in with their room-filling sound. They are played with mallets or with the hands. Thanks to the matching bag, you can easily take the meditative sounds outside.

Hokema accessories

The minimalist Hokema products hardly need any accessories. The few that you need are carefully selected. You will find mallets, stands, CDs, books, and transport aids such as Kalimba bags.

Why are Hokema Kalimbas so popular?

Hokema instruments are characterised by their natural sounds, high-quality materials, and impeccable workmanship. Hokema has been producing these fascinating instruments in a large, professional selection since 1985. Therefore, we are your expert and contact for all topics concerning Kalimbas and Sansulas, such as

  • acquisition,
  • areas of use,
  • care and maintenance,
  • repair and
  • tuning.

No tropical wood is used in the manufacture of Hokema Kalimbas. Instead, we use native woods such as cherry or copper beech, which we polish with vegetable oil. Our instruments are completely made in Germany.

Who is behind Hokema?

Owner and founder Peter Hokema has been passionate about the Kalimba since his music studies. With the aim of making it popular in Germany, he set up his factory in Walsrode, Lower Saxony, to manufacture these fascinating instruments. In 2001, he expanded the Kalimba into the patented Sansula by adding a drumhead.

In the meantime, the family business is run by the second generation and the Hokema Kalimbas are becoming more and more popular with hobby and professional musicians.