This musical instrument is the first pipe organs that are played by the sea. It is located on the shores of Zadar, Croatia. 35 musically tuned tubes and the movement of the sea are the main players of this incredible thing. The Sea Organ has 70m long with the pipes built under the concrete. The musical pipes are located so that the sea water and wind movements produce musical sounds that are heard by passers by so that it achieves a communication with nature and promotes a unity of architecture and environment. As sea forces and energies are unpredictable in terms of tides and winds, this organ offers never-ending concert of numerous musical variations in which the performer is nature itself.
It is the world’s first musical pipe organs that are played by the sea. Simple and elegant steps, carved in white stone, were built on the quayside. Underneath, there are 35 musically tuned tubes with whistle openings on the sidewalk. The movement of the sea pushes air through, and – depending on the size and velocity of the wave – musical chords are played. The waves create random harmonic sounds.
Each musical organ pipe is blown by a column of air, pushed in turn by a column of wave-moved water, through a plastic tube immersed into the water. The pipes’ musically tuned sounds emanate to the surroundings through apertures in the vertical planes of the uppermost stairs. The 7 successive groups of musical tubes are alternately tuned to two musically cognate chords of the diatonic major scale. The outcome of played tones and/or chords is a function of random time and space distribution of the wave energy to particular organ pipes.
In this part of Croatia the prevailing musical tradition is the spontaneous four-voice male singing, with melodies and chords conforming to the diatonic major scale. The 5 musically tuned pipes of each section are arranged in 1.5 meter spacing. A listener, standing or sitting on a chosen point on the scalinade, should be able to hear 5 to 7 musically tuned pipes play their natural music. Thus, whole five-pipe sections are tuned to one musical chord. The citizens of Zadar are extremely proud of the first natural musical organ driven by the sea waves ever to be constructed. This installation, absolutely unique in the world, was designed to let people enjoy the point where the medieval town of Zadar embraces the Adriatic.
Expert in dalmatian stone carvers and architect, Nikola Basic, created this masterpiece of acoustics and architecture in 2005; recently received the European Prize for Urban Public Space for this project. Many tourists come to listen to this unique aero phone, and enjoy unforgettable sunsets with a view of nearby islands.
Famed director Alfred Hitchcock said that the most beautiful sunset in the world could be seen from precisely this spot on the Zadar quay. That was how he described it after his visit to Zadar, a visit he remembered throughout his life by the meeting of the sinking sun and the sea.
Source: Informal.RO Publicat: 17 decembrie 2008 Autor: Lucia Reich
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