Theremin

You might notice that I play a very unusual instrument – the theremin! This early electronic musical instrument (one of the very first ancestors of modern synthesizers) was invented in the late 1920s by Russian inventor Lev Termen, better known in the English-speaking world as Leon Theremin. Mr. Termen and his friends, including the great theremin virtuosa Clara Rockmore, delighted audiences in the 1930s with this novel instrument and its ghostly, ethereal sound, and it has since made appearances in film scores, popular and experimental music, despite the legendary difficulty of actually playing the thing!

I play a Moog Etherwave theremin equipped with the ESPE01 pitch extension module made by Thierry Frenkel. I typically run it through any number of guitar effects processors in order to get a far-out sound. Here’s an amusing example of the possibilities of combining theremin with envelope filter: