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Vienna Instruments

Vienna Instruments Vienna Historic Winds I

SKU #K45367000000000
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Overview

A beautiful collection of unique instruments.

Whether you’re following an authentic performance practice or you’re just looking for new inspiring sound sources – Historic Winds I offers some beautiful and unique instruments! This Collection features recordings of five rare instruments from the Renaissance and Baroque periods: Transverse flute, Baroque oboe, oboe da caccia, ophicleide and serpent.

The transverse flute (Baroque flute, flauto traverso, side-blown flute) is a reedless woodwind instrument. Although the instrument had already appeared in the 12th century in Central Europe it experienced its golden era in the Baroque period as a predecessor of the modern concert flute. Unlike the modern flute the Baroque flute has just one valve and a limited key range of about 2½ octaves. The body is made of ebony, granadilla wood, boxwood, or olive wood, thus its warm and soft sound is more similar to the recorder than to the sound of a modern (transverse) flute. Today Baroque flutes are played as part of the historically informed (authentic) performance practice.

The Baroque oboe is a double reed woodwind instrument that appeared in the mid-17th century. It is also called “hautbois” which is derived from the compound French word haut (“high”, “loud”) and bois (“wood”, “woodwind”), covering the soprano range from c1 to d3. As opposed to the modern oboe the Baroque oboe has only three keys. In order to produce higher pitches, the player has to “overblow”, meaning to increase the force of air to reach the next harmonic. The oboe da caccia covers the alto register of the Baroque oboe and looks like a hunting horn with its curved tube and brass bell. It is a transposed instrument in F, so it sounds a 5th lower than the oboe. Bach wrote parts for the oboe da caccia in his cantatas, passions, and especially in his Christmas Oratorio. The successor to the oboe da caccia is the French horn.

The ophicleide is a conical-bore brass instrument belonging to the bugle family that is similar to the tuba. It was invented in 1817 by French instrument maker Jean Hilaire Asté and replaced the serpent that was considered outdated in the Romantic orchestra. Ophicleide is derived from the Greek word ophis (“serpent”) and kleis (“keys”), since it was conceived of as a “serpent with keys”. Its cupped mouthpiece is similar to modern trombone and euphonium mouthpieces. The ophicleide is most famously used in Berlioz’s “Symphonie Fantastique”, but also Wagner and Verdi wrote parts for it. Brazilian choro bands used the ophicleide well into the 20th century until it was superseded by the saxophone and the tuba. There have been claims that the ophicleide is a direct ancestor of the saxophone when supposedly Adolphe Sax put a woodwind mouthpiece on an instrument he was repairing, allegedly leading him to design and create a purpose-built instrument.

Features

  • Includes:
  • Transverse flute
  • Baroque oboe
  • Oboe da caccia
  • Ophicleide Serpent

Inspiring new sounds for your compositions.

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