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The wheelharp is a musical instrument with bowed strings controlled by a keyboard and foot-controlled motor, similar to Leonardo da Vinci's Viola organista, a keyboard-operated string instrument for continuously sounding strings by rubbing the strings with spinning wheels, powered by a treadle controlled by one foot of the musician. Created by Jon Jones and Mitchell Manger, the wheelharp debuted at the 2013 NAMM Show in Anaheim, California.[1]

According to the Wall Street Journal, it "looks and works like a cross between a harpsichord and a hurdy-gurdy: a motor driven wheel spins, rubbing against strings when the player depresses a key."[2]

However, the principle of bowed strings in a keyboard instrument is old. Michael Praetorius' Syntagma Musicum depicted a Nürnbergisch Geigenwerk (Geigenklavizimbel).

See also[edit]

Viola organista


  1. ^ Lewis, Randy. "A hunt for tickets and celebrities, set to music". The Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 28 January 2013. 
  2. ^ Smith, Ethan. "Da Vinci's Harp And Pakistani Bagpipes: A Day At America's Music Market". The Wall Street Journal. Retrieved 25 January 2013. 

External links[edit]