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Oboes (/ˈb/ OH-boh) are a family of double reed woodwind instruments. The most common oboe plays in the treble or soprano range. Oboes are usually made of wood, but there are also oboes made of synthetic materials. A soprano oboe measures roughly 65 cm long, with metal keys, a conical bore and a flared bell. Sound is produced by blowing into the reed at a sufficient air pressure, causing it to vibrate with the air column. The distinctive tone is versatile and has been described as "bright". When oboe is used alone, it is generally taken to mean the treble instrument rather than other instruments of the family, such as the cor anglais (English horn) or oboe d'amore.

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High School Oboist

Like most young oboists, I would always find any reason other than my lack of preparation to explain why my oboe playing wasn't perfect. One day in my high school wind ensemble, I made a comment about how it was a bad reed day (you all know what I mean), and my director turns to me and yells, "WAH WAH WAH I PLAY THE OBOE." It became an ongoing joke in the band, and just before I graduated, a freshman came up to me and gave me this pin that he had made. Now that I'm in college as an oboe performance major, it's always a funny reminder to me of my time in high school.

Contributed by Katie Hirtzel


That hard hard head blowing instrument

Contributed by Peter Sohn

Crumhorn. Early  predecessor of Oboe

This was taken at Leipzig's Grassi Museum in Germany

Contributed by Peter Sohn

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