Monday, April 12, 2010

Spellbound: The Sound of The Theremin

Another guest playlist! I got an email from Martin last weekend:

"A couple of contemporary female composers you might like to add to your excellent playlist on this are the Austrian Olga Neuwirth and the Japanese Misato Mochizuki. There is little on Spotify but you will find one piece by Mochizuki and some music for Theremin by Olga Neuwirth."

"Since I mentioned the Theremin in my last mail I thought you might be interested in this playlist of music for this little known and very bizarre electronic instrument that has been used to play very romantic pieces as well as inspired some composers to use it in contemporary works."

I have added in those two composers into the women composers playlist. And thanks to Martin, I finally found out about this peculiar thing that played that dreamy and quirky sound in Hitchcock's Spellbound. I've heard one piece by Clara Rockmore before, in a interesting compilation called OHM- The Gurus of Electronic Music, and I always remembered it as Trip-Hop of the 1940s. It's great that now I can explore a whole lot of works written for and performed on this instrument.

Here's the Spotify playlist from Martin: Theremin. (90 tracks, 6.9 hours). Thanks Martin! I think instrument playlists is a great idea, I'm going to make some others, and if any of the readers here is specialized in any instrument, it would be great to see your playlists too:)


  1. The TED talk of Pamelia Kurstin playing the theremin is fun:

  2. Dutch Theremin player Thorwald Jørgensen has a very classical approach of the Theremin. Check his concert compilation at

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