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Click here to listen to a sample of the Harmonic/Melodic Canon

Harmonic / Melodic Canon

In ancient Greece, Pythagoras, Euclid, and Ptolemy used an instrument called the kanon to analyze and play many different kinds of intervals and scales. In Greek, the word kanon means (1) a straight rule or rod, as in measuring instrument; and (2) a general rule or principle, as in code of law.

On the Harmonic/Melodic Canon, all 48 strings are one meter long and are tuned to the same frequency, thereby giving an aural and mathematical constant. Moveable bridges then divide the strings into many different and exact frequency ratios. Since the tuning possibilities on a canon seem endless, Cris Forster refers to it as a “limited form of infinity.”

Built:    1976, San Francisco, California.
Rebuilt: 1981, San Diego, California.
Rebuilt: 1987, San Francisco, California.

Total number of strings: 48
String length: 1000.0 mm.
Canon length: 41 ½ in.
Canon height: 5 ½ in.
Canon width: 40 ½ in.
Height on upper side: 51 ½ in.
Height on lower side: 31 ¾ in.

Sitka spruce, Honduras rosewood, birch, teak, delrin, kydex, aluminum, brass, and steel.

Open strings: G below middle C.

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