Top 10 Biggest Musical Instruments In The World

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Have you ever wondered how big a musical instrument can get? There are some pretty small ones that fit in

the palm of the musician’s hand. But others are much, much larger. We’ve done some research and put together a list of the top 10 biggest musical instruments in the world. You’ll be amazed at what we’ve found!

 

10. Big Carl The Tuba

Big Carl the Tuba

The largest tuba in the world has a name- Big Carl. It has belonged to a New York music store since 1900. It is believed to weigh about three times more than a normal orchestra tuba and it takes two people to play it. It stands well over 10 feet tall! 

9. Korean Drum

Korean Drum Biggest Music Instruments In The World

In July 2011, artists in South Korea built a gigantic drum that is over 18 feet tall and over 15 feet in diameter. It is built with pine wood and the hides of 40 cows. That’s a lot of wood and leather! It is now recognized by the Guinness Book of World Records as the largest drum in the world, being far bigger than several large bass drums owned by American universities that had previously held the title. 

8. Hyperbass Flute

Hyperbass Flute Biggest Music Instruments In The World

This flute produces sounds as low as a flute can get, hence the name “hyperbass”. It is built from PVC pipe and wood and its tubing is over 45 feet long! Italian musician Roberto Fabbriciani is one of only a few musicians who can play the huge instrument. 

7. Giant Violin

Giant-Violin-Biggest-Music-Instruments

Officially entered into the Guinness Book of World Records in 2012, the largest violin in the world is over 12 feet tall and the bow is over 15 feet long! It was built by 15 violin makers in the town of Markneukirchen, Germany. It is usually played by 3 people- one holding the violin and doing the fingering on the strings, and two operating the bow. Composer Stephan Konig has composed a rhapsody piece especially for the giant violin and an accompanying orchestra. 

6. Earth Harp

Earth Harp Weird Music Instrument In The World

The earth harp is another amazing string instrument. Its many strings are 1,000 feet in length. It was first installed in the resonating chamber mounted on one side of a valley and the other side stretches out to 1,000 feet away! It is played using resin on cotton gloves. The harpist’s hands run along the strings, creating beautiful tones that resemble those of a cello. Rubbing the strings creates a compression wave that sounds beautiful. The Earth Harp is one of only a few instruments that make use of our earth itself to produce marvelous sound. 

5. The Wanamaker Organ

The Wanamaker Organ

This huge instrument is housed inside a Philadelphia Macy’s store. It is 7 stories tall, and is bigger than some people’s houses! It contains 26,677 pipes, baffles, bellows, and wires. A large wooden staircase is behind the instrument, allowing it to be accessed for caretaking. It was built in 1904 and cost $105,000. In 1904, that was an unbelievable amount of money, and the builder actually went bankrupt before finishing. 

4. Octobass

Octobass Biggest Music Instruments In The World

First heard in France in 1850, the octobass is the largest string instrument in the world. It plays two octaves below the cello and some of its lowest notes are just barely on the threshold of human hearing capabilities. Because of its size, it is normally played by two people. One operates the bow across the strings, and the other does the fingering. There isn’t a huge demand for octobasses in orchestras, but when they are used, it’s an incredible sound. 

3. Rev. Mark Temperato’s Drum Set

Rev. Mark Temperato’s Drum Set

The largest drum set in the world contains 90 drums, 80 cymbals, and totals over 500 pieces. It belongs to the Reverend Mark Temperato, and he claims that it can be dangerous to play if you’re not careful. Once, when Temperato performed a little too long, he suffered tinnitus (ringing or buzzing in the ears) for two weeks. It takes between 8 and 10 hours to assemble and set up this massive drum set. 

2. Carnegie Guitar

Carnegie Guitar

One the atrium floor of the Carnegie Science Center in Pittsburgh, PA, lays the world’s largest guitar. It is 43.5 foot-long Gibson Flying V. Children can walk all over it, producing sound. The guitar is fully functional and was built by students of the Academy of Science and Technology in Houston, TX in 2001. Sadly, it would be difficult to play an actual piece of music on this guitar, as it would take many gifted guitarists working together to create a coherent sound. 

1. Great Stalactite Organ

Great Stalactite Organ

By far the biggest musical instrument in the world is the Great Stalactite Organ in the Luray Caverns in Luray, Virginia. It is spread across 3 acres of the caverns, and can be heard throughout the whole 64 acre caves. It was built in the 1950s by Leland Sprinkle. Reports say that he tried over 2,000 stalactites before he found the right sound. The stalactites are struck with a rubber mallet controlled by a keyboard. It produces remarkably clear sound!

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