Investigations

Theremin

The Case:

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.

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Aired:
Season 8, Episode 2

Detective:
Elyse Luray Location:
New York and New Mexico

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