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Glockenspiel          Return to list of instruments

The glockenspiel is a percussion instrument with a set of tuned metal plates, laid out like a piano keyboard, and struck with a pair of small hammers.  The term is German, meaning play bells (Glocken = bells,  spiel = play).

The glockenspiel originates from Indonesia, from where it was brought into the Netherlands in the 1650s, and from there it spread over Europe. It was used by Handel in 1739.

A modified version of the glockenspiel is frequently employed by military bands.  It has a slightly lesser range, and is made in a special ornamental frame so that it can be carried and played whilst on the march.  The very high pitch of this instrument serves to make it audible above the heavy sounds of the brass in a military band.

Music featuring the Glockenspiel. Audio is available for 3 tunes for this instrument.
No.Name of WorkCategoryComposer
1 Dance of the Hours, from La GiocondaBallet MusicPonchielli
2 Marching Through GeorgiaFolk SongVarious
3 Yankee Doodle DandyFolk SongVarious
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