Instruments of the Orchestra


 

Jeff Francis

Apryl Henry

Jennifer Larson

Dawn Sudduth


  • Orchestra

    3
  • Orchestra Diagram

    4
  • Conductor

    5
  • Strings

    6
  • Violin

    7
  • Viola

    8
  • Cello

    9
  • Contrabass

    10
  • Harp

    11
  • Woodwinds

    12
  • Flute

    13
  • Clarinet

    14
  • Oboe

    15
  • Bassoon

    16
  • Brass

    17
  • French Horn

    18
  • Trumpet

    19
  • Trombone

    20
  • Tuba

    21
  • Percussion

    22
  • Timpani

    23
  • Drums

    24
  • Auxiliary Percussion

    25
  • Mallet Instruments

    26
  • You

    27

Orchestra



An orchestra is a large group of musicians who are divided into smaller groups according to the type of instrument they play. These smaller groups are called "sections."

In most orchestras, the sections are called "strings," "woodwinds," "brass," and "percussion."

Together, all of the musicians in the different sections are led by a conductor.


Orchestra Diagram



This picture shows where the different groups of musicians in the orchestra
usually sit when they are performing.


Conductor


Morihiko Nakahara


The conductor is the leader of the orchestra. He uses his arms and a baton to direct the orchestra as they play. The musicians watch the conductor because he (or she) helps them to know when and how they should play their instruments. 

The conductor is often called 'Maestro'.


Strings



The orchestra string section includes: two groups of violins, one each of violas, celli, contra basses, and a single harp.  Stringed instruments have tightly stretched strings that are plucked or played with a bow.


Violin



This is the violin. It has the highest pitch, or sound, of all of instruments in the string section of the orchestra.  There are two groups of violins in the string section.


Viola



This is a viola.
It is slightly larger and sounds lower than the violin.


Cello


The cello is even larger than the viola.
It stands on the floor on a short peg and is held
between the player’s knees.


Contrabass



The contrabass is the largest instrument in the string section and sounds the lowest.


Harp


The harp has nearly 50 strings stretched within a frame that is about six feet high.


Woodwinds



Woodwinds are long tubes that the player blows air through. The orchestra woodwind section includes flutes, clarinets, oboes, and bassoons.


Flute



This is a flute. It is made of metal. It is played by blowing across an opening near one end of the tube.


Clarinet


This is the clarinet. It has a single thin reed of wood that vibrates when the clarinetist plays.


Oboe


This is an oboe. It is known as a 'double-reed' because it has two thin reeds that the player blows between.


Bassoon


This is a bassoon. The bassoon is also a double-reed, but it is much larger than the oboe and sounds lower.


Brass



The brass section includes the trumpet, trombone, tuba, and the French horn.


French Horn



This is the French horn.
It is a brass instrument, but it often sits behind the woodwinds.


Trumpet


The trumpet is the smallest brass instrument and sounds the highest.


Trombone


This is a trombone.
To play it, the trombonist slides a long u-shaped tube
in and out.


Tuba


The tuba is the largest instrument in the brass section and it makes the lowest sound.


Percussion


The percussion section includes different instruments that are all played by hitting them. The percussion section can be divided into the timpani, drums, mallet instruments, and auxiliary percussion.


Timpani



Timpani have a tightly stretched skin over a large,
kettle-shaped copper body.  The player uses a foot pedal to tighten or loosen the skin, which changes the pitch.


Drums


 

Drums are made of a round shell with a skin stretched tightly
over one or both ends.


Auxiliary Percussion



Auxiliary percussion includes all sorts of instruments like cymbals,
the triangle, wood blocks, and shakers.


Mallet instruments


Mallet instruments have many bars of metal or wood that are struck with a mallet. They are laid out like a piano with one bar for each note.


 You


 

Another very important member of the orchestra is you, the audience. An audience listens, enjoys, and appreciates the music that an orchestra plays