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Ronald Zollman conducts the Carnegie Mellon Philharmonic Orchestra Music is the organization of sounds and silences to produce a work that is designed to give pleasure to the listener. Music can be written down in advance or improvised (made up on the spot) but it is always intended to be performed. Classical music is the serious, written music of western countries. Music can be performed by one person, a group or a whole orchestra. It can be sung by the human voice and played with an instrument. Music can be listened to in its own right or heard as part of the soundtrack to a play, movie or a radio or TV programme.



How Stone Age people made a simple flute. A rod of ivory (from a mammoth's tusk) was sawn in half and its middle gouged out using...Read More >>How Stone Age people made a simple flute. A rod of ivory (from a mammoth's tusk) was sawn in half and its middle gouged out using a stone tool. The finger holes were then pierced, and the two halves stuck back together using tree-sap glue.

Origins

We know little about the origins of music, as none of it was recorded or written down. We do not know who first started to sing a song or make up a tune. The earliest instruments, flutes made of wood, bone or ivory, date back 40,000 years or more.

Flutes, made from bird bone and mammoth ivory, were discovered in a cave in southern Germany in 2012. Dated at around 43,000 years old, they are the oldest musical instruments known.

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