bout the Panpipes

Panpipes consist of several hollow pipes of different lengths that are closed at one end. These pipes are usually made from bamboo, however, there are instruments that have been fashioned from stone, as well as modern ones that have been made from plastic. In most instruments the pipes are arranged in a row. However, some instruments arrange the pipes in a bundle. Panpipes are played in the same fashion as whistling a bottle. You blow across the top of the pipe with the airstream angled slightly downward to produce a tone. Plastic Panpipe by Angel

One can safely assume that panpipes were created in prehistoric times. Drawings of instruments appear on Illyrian urns that date from several hundred years B.C. Panpipes are found all around the globe from the mediteranian to east asia and even the new world. In ancient Greece panpipes were called the Syrinx. In China they are known as p'ai-hsiao.

The instrument shown here is made by Angel. Its pipes are tuned to play the diatonic scale from C to c. You can alter the pitch of a note by a semitone, thus it is capable of playing a chromatic scale. Other instruments are tuned chromatically and have a range of more than three octaves. Plastic Panpipe by Angel

Chinese instruments are not arranged from lowest to highest pitch. At one end of the instrument are small pipes which increase in size to the middle of the instrument. The size of the pipes then decreases until the other end of the instrument is reached. Such instruments play a descending whole tone scale to the middle of the instrument. They then begin an ascending whole tone scale one half step higher than the other side of the instrument. Plastic Panpipe by Angel

Plastic Panpipe by Angel

Page Design Copyright 2010 Michael Berger

Clip Art Copyright 2002 Dover Publications