The Hydraulophone:  Music From Water

 

The hydraulophone is the world's first musical instrument that makes sound from vibrations in water. Played by touching small jets of water, the hydraulophone produces a rich, unique, soulful sound.

Typically acoustic instruments produce sound by matter in its solid state (percussion or string instruments), or by matter in its gaseous state (by air in wind instruments). The hydraulophone is liquid-based (hydraulic), suggesting that the space of known acoustic musical instruments should be broadened to include all three states of matter: solid (percussion or strings), gas (wind), and liquid (a new category of musical instruments).

Interactive Aquatic Architecture

Carefully crafted, sculpted and tuned for underwater or above-water use, hydraulophones are currently being used in water parks, museums, science centers, studios and homes.

 World's Largest Hydraulophone at the Ontario Science Center in Toronto

World's Largest Hydraulophone at the Ontario Science Center in Toronto

 Young girls playing with a hydraulophone outside of MannLab Toronto

Young girls playing with a hydraulophone outside of MannLab Toronto

 Group of youngsters and onlookers in Boston, MA

Group of youngsters and onlookers in Boston, MA

Music Therapy

As the world’s first instrument to run on water, the hyraulophone has unique healing properties. Hydraulophones are designed for therapeutic applications in patient's homes, retirement homes, and nursing homes.  Music therapists use hydraulophones to supplement their practice and to improve their clients' lives with the healing physical and emotional elements of water and music.

Hot tubs containing hydraulophones are ideal for creative relaxation. Since the hydraulist (the musician) is immersed in the liquid used to make the sound, this instrument is often called a balnaphone. This name is derived from "balnea", an Ancient Greek word for bath.