Johann Georg Albrechtsberger: Concerto for Jews Harp and Strings#
Musical example: Johann Georg Albrechtsberger (1736 Klosterneuburg/Lower Austria - 1809 Vienna), Concerto for Jew's Harp and Strings in Eb major (1770), Finale. This example documents the attempt to maintain a certain connection between sophisticated instrumental music of the period and Folkmusic. To play a complete scale with the Jew's harp (Maultrommel or Brummeisen), it takes two instruments of approximately the same size that are tuned at the interval of a fourth or a fifth apart. The Jew's harp is held between the slightly-opened rows of teeth so that the metal strip can vibrate; the mouth of the player provides the resonance. By using varying positions of the tongue, cheeks and lips, the player strengthens different overtones and can thus play melodies with a tonal amplitude of 1_ octaves. (E. Stadler)
The second illustration shows the schematic set-up of an orchestra in the 18th c.
© Sound: Klangführer durch die Sammlung alter Musikinstrumente, Kunsthistorisches Museum Wien, CD-Nr. 516 537-2.
© Pictures: Steiermärkisches Landesmuseum Joanneum, Abteilung für Volkskunde (Foto: Helmut Schubert, Papiermühlgasse 28, A-8020 Graz).