Before taking cello lessons, learn a little of the instruments history. The cello is a member of the string family, along with the violin and viola. It is a much larger instrument then the violin and viola, however, and the player must sit down in a chair to play it properly. This instrument is most closely associated with European classical music. It is described, by some, as the closest sounding instrument to the human voice. Listed below are some important things that you should know about the history of the cello.
- Cellos were first constructed in the early 16th century Italy by Andrea Amati and his sons, Antonio and Girolamo.
- The instrument was called the violoncello at first, which means “little, big viol.” It has been shortened in recent years to cello.
- It is usually made of wood, although other materials such as aluminum can be used. Less expensive cellos often have tops and backs made of laminated wood. Expensive cellos are made of spruce and maple. The top and back of the instrument are traditionally hand-carved.
- It is made up of over 70 parts!
- It became popular in the 16th century because composers and conductors were looking for lower tones in their music. It produces a deep and rich sound and is the second-largest (and lowest) bowed string instrument in the modern symphony orchestra.
- The instrument’s evolution over the years has come to be in order to make it easier to play. The size and shape have changed since the first was built.
- It can be used as a solo instrument. There are several concertos, where a solo cello is accompanied by an orchestra. There are also many sonatas for cello and piano accompaniment. And there are pieces that are strictly for solo cello.
- It can also be used in chamber music ensembles, which are small groups of instruments. It is a member of the traditional string quartet and string quintet and other mixed groups.
- Famous cello composers in the early days of the instrument were Bach, Haydn, Beethoven, Brahms, Mozart, and Schubert.
- This instrument is also, of course, used in symphony orchestras. There are usually eight to twelve cellists in an orchestra. They are a critical part of orchestral music, playing both the melody and harmony in different sections of the music.
- Today, it is used sometimes in pop and rock music. A recent performance that included the cello was Rihanna and Ne-Yo’s performance at the American Music Awards.
- Back in the 1960’s, popular artists such as the Beatles and Cher used the cello in their music. You can hear this beautiful instrument in such Beatles’ songs as “Yesterday,” “Eleanor Rigby,” and “Strawberry Fields Forever.” Cher used it in “Bang Bang (My Baby Shot Me Down).”
- Some recent rock bands that have used the cello are Aerosmith, Nirvana, Oasis, Smashing Pumpkins, and OneRepublic.
- Luka Sulic and Stjepan Hauser are famous cello players known for their performances on the song “Smooth Criminal” by Michael Jackson and “Thunderstruck” by AC/DC.
- This instrument is also used in the jazz and musical theater genres.
If you are interested in cello lessons, check out our website today to get signed up! https://www.omahaschoolofmusicanddance.com/violin-fiddle-viola-cello-lessons-omaha-ne/