Hupfeld Model B Phonoliszt-Violina
Hupfeld Model B Phonoliszt-Violina.

Originally used in a hotel in Penn, Pennsylvania, the illustrious lineage of this Phonoliszt-Violina has included Nathan Gendelberg, (Gaslight Club, Pittsburgh), Larry Givens, Hathaway & Bowers, Donald Barr, Jerry and Sylvia Cohen, the Sanfilippo Place de la Musique Collection, and the Ukai Museum in Japan. We put it into playing condition for the Cohens in the early 1980s, and then fully restored it in 1999.

Violins in Hupfeld Model B Phonoliszt-Violina.

The three violins, each with one actively-played string, are played by a round bow that has 1,344 individually-tied strands of horsehair forming a circle. Intricate pneumatic controls provide three bowing speeds, three rates of change between one speed and another, a variable pressure mechanism that presses the violins farther into the bow as it turns faster, and variable speed vibrato. There are also two accent devices, one which causes the violin to move faster toward the bow, and another which suddenly increases the bow speed and pressure.

Upper back of Hupfeld Model B Phonoliszt-Violina.
Back view of the violin compartment, showing the bow near the top center, bow pressure cams and followers within the bow, violin speed and pressure controls under the bow, valve chests with lead tubing near the bottom, a large vacuum reservoir at the upper right, and a wooden box containing a large wind motor for turning the bow at the upper left.
Piano in the Hupfeld Model B Phonoliszt-Violina.

Interior view of the Phonoliszt-Violina piano, showing the long pump at the bottom; piano expression, rewind and shutoff control valves above it, and the piano stack just under the piano keybed.