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date: 22 November 2019

Pansymphonikum [polyharmonion].locked

  • Laurence Libin

Extract

[polyharmonion]

Free-reed keyboard instrument built in 1845 by the Franciscan priest Peter Anton Singer (b Unterhäselgehr, Austria, 18 July 1810; d Salzburg, Austria, 25 Jan 1882). It has two manuals and 48 registers and was claimed to be capable of reproducing the sounds of a whole orchestra. It is displayed in the Peter Singer Museum at the Franciscan convent at Salzburg, where Singer was organist and choirmaster from 1840, and later also master of novices; previously he was organist and choirmaster in Bolzano and Innsbruck. Largely self-taught in music, he won esteem as an organist, composer, music theorist, and instrument maker; besides his Pansymphonikum, he made five harmoniums. He was the author of Metaphysischen Blicke in die Tonwelt (Munich, 1847) and other published works, and composed a large corpus of liturgical music. See W. Hoffmann: Pater Peter Singer OFM, 1810–1882: ein Beitrag zur franziskanischen Musiktheorie und Kompositionspraxis im 19. Jahrhundert im Raum Salzburg-Tirol...

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