Browse Items (336 total)

watercolour, ink and graphite on paper

00.0224 theremin with speaker.JPG
Metal, electronics In 1932 Percy Grainger attended a concert of musical pieces performed on a new instrument called the theremin. This instrument, invented in 1920 by Russian physicist Lev Sergeyevich Termen (known in the USA as Léon Theremin) was a…

Masonite, wire, string, tape

This invention was Grainger's first attempt at constructing an instrument which could glide smoothly from one tone to the next and which was controlled by a 'musical score' rather than a player. The sound was produced…

06.0034 side.JPG
Wood, plastic, string, tape, metal, masonite

This ‘reed box’ is designed somewhat like a giant
mechanically-operated mouth organ. A large strip of
paper (not present), like a pianola roll with holes cut at
calculated points, was to be rolled…

Wood, cardboard tubes, paper, string, tape, nails

Ink, paper, wood, tape, glass

Grainger scored his compositions Free Music No.1 and Free Music No.2 (1936-7) for multiple theremins. These scores were reproduced by Grainger in this Free Music Legend which he made for the Grainger Museum’s…

00.0056 ButterflyPiano.tif
Iron, wood, steel, ivory, ebony, nails.

Keen to explore the possibilities of Free Music, but lacking instruments that would readily play the ‘noteless’ gliding tones it required, Grainger and Cross modified existing instruments to make…

Listener In 1956 Butterfly piano.jpg
Digital reproduction of newsprint.
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