Ludovic Van Hellemont

Having spent my teenager years in Saint-Germain-en-Laye, the hometown of Claude Debussy, I was constantly exposed to French music at the local conservatory and got very attached to it. Olivier Messiaen's music has played a great role in my musical education. Inevitably I got acquainted with the Ondes Martenot, for which Messiaen was an important ambassador. The instrument has never ceased to fascinate and enchant me, and I got lucky enough to be in possession of two of those instruments, both of them being used depending on the type of project I am working on.

The ondes Martenot or ondes musicales ("musical waves") is an early electronic musical instrument. It is played with a keyboard or by moving a ring along a wire, creating "wavering" sounds similar to a theremin. A player of the ondes martenot is called an ondist.

The ondes Martenot was invented in 1928 by the French inventor Maurice Martenot. Martenot was inspired by the accidental overlaps of tones between military radio oscillators, and wanted to create an instrument with the expressiveness of the cello.

The instrument is used in more than 100 classical compositions. The French composer Olivier Messiaen used it in pieces such as his 1949 symphony Turangalîla-Symphonie, and his sister-in-law Jeanne Loriod was a celebrated player of the instrument. It appears in numerous film and television soundtracks, particularly science fiction and horror films. (Wikipedia)

Ondes Musicales by Jean-Loup Dierstein, Paris

ONDEA by David Kean, Calgary

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