(4 1/2 octaves concert model) made for him in 1991
performer of rare instruments
"Thomas Bloch is unquestionnably a virtuoso and a musician"
The New York Times
NEW ! WATERPHONE - THEREMIN CELLO
audio - video
crystal voice duet
It is possible to hear CDs and to see more videos on the audio - video page of this site.
The principle of a glass bow and a metal rod fixed to a heavy metal block, which could be seen in laboratories during the 18th century but had never been used before to make a musical instrument, was revived in 1952 by Bernard and François Baschet, who also invented the inflatable guitar, several original instruments (piano Baschet, tole a voix...) and an educational instrumentarium which is widely used in music schools today.
The cristal Baschet (sometimes called Crystal Organ and in English, Crystal Baschet or by mistake : cristal Bachet) is usually 4 octaves and a half (other models can go from 3,5 to 6 octaves), composed of 56 chromatically tuned glass rods, rubbed with wet fingers. So, it is close to the Glassharmonica. But in the Cristal Baschet, the vibration of the glass is passed on to the heavy block of metal by a metal stem whose variable length determines the frequency (the note). Amplification is obtained by fiberglass cones fixed on wood and by a tall cut out metal part, in the shape of a flame. "Whiskers" ("moustaches), placed under the instrument, to the right, increase the sound power of high-pitched sounds in vibrating by sympathy.
Thomas Bloch plays the cristal Baschet
The cristal Baschet is used in a lot of fields : ballet-music, songs, movie music, theater-music, jazz, rock, improvisation, tales, contemporary music, opera, electronic music, techno music...
Among other composers, we can mention : Damon ALBARN, Cyril ATEF, François BAYLE, Thomas BLOCH, Vincent-Marie BOUVOT, Jean-Philippe CALVIN, Philip CLEMO, Jarvis COCKER, David COULTER, Michel DENEUVE, DISCODEINE, Loïk DURY, Luc FERRARI, Tom FIRE, Robert J. FOSTER, Arthur H, Teddy LASRY, -M- (Mathieu CHEDID), Patrice RENSON, Lokua KANZA, Antonin LEYMARIE, Rob LORD, Henk van der MEULEN, Christophe MINCK, Yael NAIM, Jean-Jacques PALIX, Michel REDOLFI, Guy REIBEL, Etienne ROLIN, Philippe SARDE, Emilie SIMON, Stuart STAPLES, Roger STEPTOE, Toru TAKEMITSU, Vladimir TOSIC, Olivier TOUCHARD, Alain VOIRPY, Tom WAITS, Richard WELLS, Patrick WOLF...
Thomas Bloch (cristal Baschet), Elise Lorraine (voice, piano)
and Hein Pijnenburg (bass clarinet) an excerpt from "Stamina"
(music by Henk van der Meulen) during a TV program
(VARA / Holland)
Thomas Bloch shows the cristal Baschet to Marianne James,
Charlélie Couture and Cyril Hanouna during a TV program (in French)
(France 2 / France)
Thomas Bloch (ondes Martenot, glass harmonica, cristal Baschet),
Damon Albarn (Blur, Gorillaz) and David Coulter
during "Monkey: journey to the West" preparation
(BBC - Endemol / England)