A man from Santa Fe, New Mexico bought a theremin off e-Bay. If you’ve never seen a theremin, you’ve undoubtedly heard one. One of the first electronic instruments, and the only instrument played without touching, the theremin makes eerie, ethereal music, the kind that creates uncertainty and suspense in movie sound tracks. Robert Moog, creator of the electric synthesizer, called the theremin “a vital cornerstone of our contemporary music technology.”
When his theremin arrived, our contributor was excited to find an unusual document tacked to the inside of the cabinet. The letterhead paper bore the address to the Theremin Studios in New York City.
Does our contributor have one of the fewer than a dozen instruments in the U.S. that Leon Theremin built himself?
History Detectives travels to the Caramoor Center for Music and the Arts in Katonah, New York to consult with experts and find out whether this strange instrument helped spark a rock n’ roll revolution.
- Related Investigation Transatlantic Cable How did this twisted fragment of metal spark a communications revolution?
- Related Investigation Mouse Toy Could this tiny toy labeled 'Micky' be the original Mickey Mouse?
- Also in Depression and WWII: 1929-1945 Continental Club Card What secrets can this business card reveal about glamour and vice in 1930s Los Angeles?
- Also in Depression and WWII: 1929-1945 Exercise Records What role did these records play in the sculpting of america's fixation with fitness?
- Also with Elyse Luray Liberty Bell Pin Was one of America’s most iconic symbols melted down into a mere memento?
- Also with Elyse Luray Black Star Line Is this certificate a rare artifact from the heyday of Marcus Garvey?
This is a place for opinions, comments, questions and discussion; a place where viewers of History Detectives can express their points of view and connect with others who value history. We ask that posters be polite and respectful of all opinions. History Detectives reserves the right to delete comments that don’t conform to this conduct. We will not respond to every post, but will do our best to answer specific questions, or address an error.