Music

The Octobass Towers Over Its Players

The octobass is an instrument that can play a C note lower than the range of human hearing. It was invented in 1850, and meant to provide a deep rumbling in traditional orchestras. However, it never took off as a mainstream instrument, and only a few specimens exist today. To play the octobass, a musician must operate its system of levers and foot pedals while wielding a large, cumbersome bow.

Share the knowledge!

Key Facts In This Video

  1. To play an octobass, a musician must stand on a platform and operate a set of levers. 00:37

  2. The octobass is tuned two octaves below a cello, and its lowest C note is at 16 Hz—below the range of human hearing. 01:44

  3. The strings on an octobass are so large that you can observe their vibrations easily. 02:40

Written by Curiosity Staff April 24, 2015

Curiosity uses cookies to improve site performance, for analytics and for advertising. By continuing to use our site, you accept our use of cookies, our Privacy Policy and Terms of Use.