1929–30 Theremin, Left Handed

1929–30 Theremin, Left Handed

Who Commissioned This Instrument?

Unverified, possibly RCA.

Who Owned This Instrument?

Henry Solomonoff

What Do We Know About This Instrument?

Wood chassis panel, breadboard style. Mounted horizontally, resonance coils mounted to panel, like RCA. (Unlike RCA, all other components are mounted and wired to same panel). Integrated power supply and audio stages.

This is a near twin to the 1929–30 Theremin, and has been modified for left-handed playing. It appears that only the pitch and volume resonance coils have been transferred from one side of the assembly board to the other, with connecting wires extended.

Why is it Special?

The early date of construction, combined with certain construction details make it a likely candidate to be one of the two prototypes that Lev made for RCA ca. May 1929. It is also possible that this instrument is one of the ten Victor Theremins that performed at Carnegie Hall in 1930 (albeit with custom-built internals).

It is housed in a stock RCA cabinet made by Jamestown Mantel Co., with a serial number of 116, modified with removable legs and for left-handed playing by moving the antenna mounts to opposite ends of the cabinet and plugging the holes left by the original mount positions.

Tube Complement:

Schematic

Not currently available