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Oddmusic has an entire section dedicated to the Theremin!! Find out more info, see rare pics, and read one of the only interviews with Leon Theremin in our Featured Sections area.

Listen to a sample of the Theremin


The Theremin is one of the earliest electronic instruments, and is played without ever physically touching it.

Outfitted with two antennas, the primary operator is the electrostatic coupling between the player and the instrument's electrodes. When the hands of the player enter the electrostatic field, changes in pitch and volume occur. The left side controls the volume, and the right controls the pitch. It was nvented in the 1920's by Lev Termen.

The Theremin's sound enjoyed cult status in many sci-fi movies of the 1950's, being used for spooky sounding effects, but virtuoso's like Clara Rockmore refused to play in any those soundtracks, because she played the Theremin as a "serious classical instrument" and felt it demeaned the instrument.

The Theremin is still used today in movies, and by a number of musicians, and has undergone a new resurgence, used by bands from Led Zeppelin to Radiohead and Nine Inch Nails, and also played in more traditional styles.

His last protégé, and grand-niece Lydia Kavina is now one of the leading classical Thereminists today.
While finding an original vacuum tube RCA Theremin is nearly impossible, more modern Theremin's are manufactured today.

One which closely captures the classic Theremin sound, along with other features, is the late Robert Moog's EtherWave.

Moog built homemade Theremin's in his teens, and later created the famous Moog synthesizer in the 1960's.


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