A service of Cincinnati Public Radio  

Keyboard Instruments:
Return to menu



This instrument is held between your hands and consists of bellows, two sets of reeds, akeyboard for the melody and buttons for bass notes and chords. While playing the keyboard and buttons with your fingers, the bellows are pushed open and closed. To make the sound they pump air through one set of reeds when being opened and through the second set of reeds when being closed.



A set of bells in a church or bell tower that are played using a keyboard.



A keyboard instrument with tuned metal bars. When a key on the keyboard is pressed, a hammer hits a metal bar to produce a tone.



An early keyboard instrument consisting of strings stretched across an oblong wooden box, and a brass wedge or tangent. When the key is struck, the tangent rises and strikes the string, causing it to make the sound, which is very soft.



A keyboard instrument that looks like a small organ. The sound on the harmonium is made by pushing air through metal reeds. The player uses foot pedals to pump the air.



A keyboard instrument that was an ancestor of the piano. When the keys are pressed, the strings are plucked by quills. Because of this, it is nearly impossible to make changes in dynamics playing the harpsichord.



A keyboard instrument on which sound is produced by forcing air through pipes. Each pipe sounds one tone, and is controlled by keyboards and pedals.



A stringed keyboard instrument. Its strings are struck by hammers which are connected to the keys. There are 88 keys on a modern piano, and each one is a different note. It was originally called pianoforte because it could play both soft (piano) and loud (forte).



This is the original name for the modern piano, which comes from the fact that a player could play both soft (piano) and loud (forte), unlike its harpsichord ancestor.

Talk to us
We love to hear your comments on Classics for Kids.

Get the Classics for Kids Volume 1 & 2 CD set for your family

Home | This Week's Show | Past Shows | Composers | Games | Music | More | For Grownups
On the Radio | Events | Links | Contact Us
Teachers | Parents | About Classics for Kids | Privacy Policy
©2017, Cincinnati Public Radio, Inc.