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Huge new horn is world’s lowest trumpet

Vairis Nartišs, one of Latvia’s leading trombone players from the National Opera’s (LNO) Symphony Orchestra has made the world’s first subcontrabass trumpet.

Nartišs, who is also part of numerous odd musical projects as well as being an enterprising music instrument retailer, told LSM’s culture editors that the subcontrabass trumpet differs from its regular counterpart by being six times larger. The length of the instrument stretches longer than two meters and together with its case weighs more than 20 kilograms.

The maker claims the subcontrabass trumpet will eventually see a wide range of applications – starting with academic music, by expanding the tonal range of the brass instrument arsenal, and ending with attractive performances and rhythmic bass guitar-like musical passages in any genre.

Of his new huge horn the LNO symphony trombonist admits that “for now this newly-built subcontrabass trumpet will be used as a show and musical performance attraction. But I was restless and curious, wanting to hear what a trumpet six times its normal size might sound like. I hope that in time, cooperating with composers around the world, the instrument will begin to appear in scores and arrangements,” Nartišs said.

The subcontrabass trumpet is just one of his many ideas relating to musical instruments and their accessories. He wanted to create a previously non-existent instrument to leave something behind in music history.

Nartišs’ next step is to present the horn at the Frankfurt Music Messe gear exhibit next month. Then he will have to introduce it as a new tonal option to composers around the world.

“Every boy has his favorite toy that he plays with and that grows with him. For me these toys were musical instruments. I’ve always wanted to rebuild, improve and build again. Recently the lifestyle, amusement and hobby has become a business. Many ask – why do you do this? I answer – first for myself, then I offer to others. That’s how it was with the baroque trombone, which I made for myself a few years back, but now it’s a required piece of equipment for more than 120 trombonists around the world,” Nartišs said with pride.

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