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Percussion: KETTLEDRUMS  
But an orchestra can't be complete without the kettledrums! Beethoven was one of the first composers to recognize its potential. He wrote special, sometimes solo, passages for kettledrums in his symphonies, such as in the Ninth's scherzo. Typically played in pairs before the 19th century, this is of course no longer the case. For his Requiem, Berlioz prescribed as many as 16 kettledrums!

(There are of course other types of drums and other percussion instruments, e.g. cymbals, gongs, triangles, etc.)

The kettledrums (timpani) on exhibit are Austrian or Bavarian, ca.18th century, built of two copper bowls with decorative iron hardware and calfskin heads (plastic skins are also used today), and tuned by turning the 6 or 7 iron handles.
Where in the orchestra are the PERCUSSION INSTRUMENTS? Click HERE (Close pop-up window when done).
Photo courtesy of the Philharmonic Society of Orange County




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