Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Wednesday Wonder: Music by Theremin

The star of today's Wednesday Wonder is the theremin. Invented in the early 20th Century, the theremin is an electronic instrument that is played not by touch but by moving the hands back and forth in the surrounding air. In this performance, filmed at a TED gathering, Pamelia Kurstin gets to play the sound waves on which the device operates. Can you identify the songs?*

Direct Video Link

Interesting, there's a wealth of information available about the theremin; here are a few resources:

Jim Fusilli, "An Instrument Comes Into Its Own", The Wall Street Journal, January 1, 2013

Jane McGrath, "How to Play a Theremin", HowStuffWorks

"Among the songs played are Autumn Leaves, Lush Life, and Listen, Words Are Gone.


Louise Gallagher said...

My stepson uses a Theremin in his performances with his band -- I find it amazing!

Hannah Stephenson said...

I love the Theremin, too...fascinating.

Elisabeth Zguta said...

Very cool - I never heard of this before. Thanks for sharing this.

Wyn Vogel said...

Totally - amazing - such a beautiful sound!!

Michelle said...

The theremin imitates the musical saw well. Do you know there is a festival in NYC dedicated to playing music on saws? 'Time' magazine reported on it