Beethoven’s Ode to Joy Played With 167 Theremins Placed Inside Matryoshka Dolls in Japan

A decade ago, in Tokyo, 167 musi­cians per­formed a Beethoven clas­sic with the “Matry­omin,” a new-fan­gled instru­ment that lodges a theremin inside a matryosh­ka. A matryosh­ka, of course, is one of those Russ­ian nest­ed dolls where you find wood­en dolls of decreas­ing size placed one inside the oth­er. As for the theremin, it’s a cen­tu­ry-old elec­tron­ic musi­cal instru­ment that requires no phys­i­cal con­tact from the play­er. You can watch its inven­tor, Leon Theremin, give it a demo in the vin­tage video below. And via this link you can see the Matry­omin Ensem­ble per­form­ing a mes­mer­iz­ing ver­sion of Amaz­ing Grace. Enjoy.

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Relat­ed Con­tent 

See Japan­ese Musi­cians Play “Amaz­ing Grace” with 273 Theremins Placed Inside Matryosh­ka Dolls–Then Learn How They Per­form Their Mag­ic

Sovi­et Inven­tor Léon Theremin Shows Off the Theremin, the Ear­ly Elec­tron­ic Instru­ment That Could Be Played With­out Being Touched (1954)

Leon Theremin Adver­tis­es the First Com­mer­cial Pro­duc­tion Run of His Rev­o­lu­tion­ary Elec­tron­ic Instru­ment (1930)

Learn How to Play the Theremin: A Free Short Video Course

“Some­where Over the Rain­bow” Played on a 1929

Meet Clara Rock­more, the Pio­neer­ing Elec­tron­ic Musi­cian Who First Rocked the Theremin in the Ear­ly 1920s

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Open Culture was founded by Dan Colman.