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Magical Music of the Theremin

Students experience the science, history, and sound of the theremin, still marveled as the only instrument that is played without being touched. Presented alongside a multi-media slideshow.

Pennsylvania Curriculum Standards

(A=Assembly; W=Workshop; R=Residency)

3.2.B Physical Sciences: Physics A, R

9.1 Production, Performance and Exhibition of Dance, Music, Theatre and Visual Arts A, R

9.2 Historical and Cultural Contexts A, R

15.4 Learning Through Experience A, R

25.3 Pro-Social Relationships with Adults R

25.4 Pro-Social Relationships with Peers R

Art Form(s): Music, Media

Instrument(s): Theremin

Musicopia offers quality
“Little Ones” programming
for Early Learning Centers

Assembly, Workshop, and Residency Offerings

Magic and Music of the Theremin Assembly

Imagine using only your hand movements in the empty air to fill the room with music…

An exquisite instrument invented in 1919 by Leon Theremin, the Theremin is still marveled as the only instrument that is played without being touched. Kip Rosser takes students on a journey as they discover the science, history, and sound behind this unique instrument. Program available with an accompanying multimedia slideshow.

Best for: K-8  •  After-School/Community

Magical Music of the Theremin Residency

Imagine standing in front of a harmless looking box. Then, using only hand movements in the empty air, music begins to fill the room. This astonishing method of creating music is just as magical as it was in 1919 when inventor Leon Theremin unveiled the world’s first electronic musical instrument – played without being touched.

Students learn that the Theremin immediately responds to the slightest movement as it offers every student a direct system of feedback for conveying their own expressive musical ideas, regardless of whether they’ve ever played an instrument. While exploring the tonal possibilities of this unique and special instrument, students become familiar with the scientific principles surrounding the Theremin such as heterodyne principle, the human body as a capacitor for electricity, electromagnetic fields, how sound is produced and how we hear and experience it.

Best for: K-8  •  After-School/Community

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About the Artist

Featuring: Kip Rosser

Back in 1996, after a twenty-one-year hiatus from serious musical study, Kip Rosser crossed paths with the grandfather of all electronic instruments; he purchased a kit and built his first Theremin. Since that time, his performances, staged productions, award-winning compositions and industry recognition have earned him a reputation as one of the most accomplished Thereminists in the world. 


In 2009, he joined the roster of teaching artists for Musicopia. The programs and residencies he presents are always age/grade appropriate and the presentation specific to the class subject, if desired (history, physics, music, the science of sound, etc). In addition, his ongoing passion for education and music resulted in his development of courseware for using the Theremin in therapeutic settings as well as The Complete Theremin, the most comprehensive Theremin lessons currently available – all offered free online.

March of 2010 saw the release of his CD, Euphonic Verses, a program of classical music featuring his Theremin and pianist, Jef Anderson. He is featured in the Noise Beneath the Apple, author Heather Jacks’s compendium of Manhattan’s subway musicians. Film credits include the original score for director, Sabina Ptasnik’s Gravity; he contributed Theremin tracks by composer, Dane Walker, for the film score of award-winning director, Toddy Burton’s film, Scientists in the Woods. In January of 2016, Rosser completed his original Theremin score for Michael Jason Allen’s film, An Idle Mind is the Devil’s Playground. He also released his new CD of original ambient compositions for Theremin, Lessons from Vinegar Mother.

Joined Musicopia: 2009

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