Great manaschy, Soviet and Kyrgyz poet-storyteller, People's Artist of the Kyrgyz SSR
From a young age he worked for hire. In 1916, he took part in the uprising of the Kyrgyz against the expansion of the Russian empire. Until 1922, the manaschi fought in the Red Army on the Turkestan front with the Basmachi and White Guards.
The great writer Chingiz Aitmatov said this about the narrator: "If they ask me who I consider the greatest son of the Kyrgyz people, I will first of all name Sayakbai Karalayev."
Sayakbay said that once in his life he received unprecedented satisfaction, reciting the epic in its full version for 23 days. This happened in the area of Solton-Sary. In the mornings, he smeared his throat with ghee, and when he got tired, he took a short break - and so for 23 days.
From the end of 1958 until the late autumn of 1961, 45 thousand meters of film were recorded. This is how the legend of the trilogy of the epic - "Manas", "Semetey" and "Seytek" was filmed.
Ton district, Issyk-Kul region
He began to say the epic "Manas" after he saw in a dream an ayan (suggestion from above, vision, insight): Sayakbay communicated with the spirits of ancestors and the heroes of the epic.
In May 1971, the manaschi was hospitalized. The disease proceeded hard, he stopped recognizing people, but even then he continued to tell the epic. Doctors said that the patient's condition was deteriorating every day, but the more difficult it became for him, the longer he said "Manas". He died at the age of 77.
The amazing phenomenon of a short old man who could "turn" into a mighty hero and tell an epic for days on end is still amazing.
In addition to telling the epic, Karalaev had one more thing of his life - he trained golden eagles. Manaschi had three birds, which he named Koyronkara, Boz Zhigit and Kuldubadam. Berkuts lived with him for more than 10 years.
Sayakbay had another golden eagle - Karacholok, the manaschi starred with him in an autobiographical film. During the funeral of Karalaev, the bird flew for a long time in the sky above his house and made plaintive cries. Later, the golden eagle disappeared.