About the Harmonic
The Harmonic is a handcrafted and hand-tuned steel instrument built from high-quality materials. It is a unique sound sculpture that produces a captivatingly clear tonality while maintaining a cathedral-like, relaxing sound. The Harmonic is typically positioned on the musician’s lap or mounted on a stand, while the fingertips and thumbs are used to strike different zones on the instrument surface to create distinct tones. The Harmonic produces unparalleled and dynamic tonal quality through this simple playing method, which is beloved by experienced musicians and novices alike.
The Harmonic is forged by hand and detailed in a tuning ring until the correct note, pitch, and form is achieved. The steel used for the Harmonic is exceptionally resilient, resulting in an instrument with a perfectly soft yet durable and long-lasting sound. The Harmonic design produces a sonic range that combines to enhance the combined overtones throughout the whole instrument. Simultaneously, the unique features also allow the instrument's tonality to be remarkably clear and pure. The Harmonic is a mesmerizing musical instrument built for free improvisation and self-exploration while also providing a wonderful compliment when played alongside other musical instruments. The Harmonic's clear tonality, stable dynamic range, and crisp tones work perfectly for sound healing, meditation, and yoga, as well as for developing skills in playing a percussion instrument.
Madeleine Rivera from Harmonic Art, at the Meinl headquarters in Gutenstetten, Germany.
At our Harmonic Art Campus located in Medellín, Colombia, we create the finest handpans in the world made with the best premium materials and quality craftsmanship. Our main building is the Harmonic House complex (middle of the picture, point “C”), purpose-built as a dedicated handpan workspace only. In our workshop, every detail of the Harmonic Art handpan is carefully considered and meticulously crafted to meet each customer’s discerning eye and ear.
All Harmonics are built at this facility and are tuned by hand in Barcelona, Spain, using very strategic hammering, a strobe tuning device, well-trained ears and years of experience!
Harmonic Art Campus located in Medellín, Colombia.
The Harmonic upper shell has a central note along with individual tone fields around the outer circumference, all of which are hand-tuned. It may sound like a harp, bell, or steelpan, depending on how it is played. The notes are constructed in a “zig-zag” sequence on its outer circle from the lowest to the highest. This allows performers to ascend or descend the scale by playing the notes alternately with his/her right and left hand. Each tone field has multiple overtones on a flat area around an inverted oval in the middle, with gaps between the notes for percussive slaps. The materials used for the Harmonic are carefully selected not only for the beautiful sound they produce but also to ensure the instrument is an impressive sculpture. Unlike other instruments, there are no musical modalities or methods to learn, and no pre-written musical scores or songs to memorize. This instrument marries rhythm, melody, and harmony in a single flow.
The Harmonic is a straightforward and effortless instrument to play. Since there are no “wrong” musical notes in the scale, it is fully capable of generating a prolonged, serene, and hypnotic sound. This instrument provides the rarest of gifts - creative freedom for all musicians.
The lower half shell is a simplified surface with a round port in its center, and Ghatam / Udu attributes that use Helmholtz resonance. The lower shell is tuned so that a long, sustained note can be generated when the player slaps the rim of the port. It may also create a low tone when slapped with the palm. The outer circumference has a protective high-quality rubber trim ring, and the lower shell opening is shaped with a double curvature for a more comfortable grip during transport.
Each fundamental tone has an overtone tuned to an octave above it and an additional compound fifth note above the octave. The overtones can be highlighted or silenced depending on how and where the musician strikes the notes. Players can activate the octave note when striking the long side, and the compound fifth can be activated when striking the short side. The overtones may be heard as an integrating part of the note being played, among various levels of overtones that float around the main notes. Every note on your Harmonic should be fine-tuned, with overtones that give each a rich, layered quality. The Harmonic is truly capable of conducting a small orchestra on your lap and bringing the music up from the depth of your body.
The Harmonic is a captivating and enchanting musical instrument. It represents the union and requirements of an excellent quality sound sculpture, genuinely unique and powerfully exclusive.
Harmonic Art® is a registered trademark for musical instruments.