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Cor Anglais

The first thing always mentioned about the English horn, the alto of the double-reed family, is that it is neither English nor is it a horn.

Cor Anglais

Instrument: Cor Anglais

In this film, Jill Crowther introduces her instrument - the cor anglais.

The Philharmonia’s Principal Cor Anglais’ Chair is endowed by Mervyn and Barbara King.

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To make matters more confusing, the instrument is often referred to by its French name, the cor anglais, all for obscure reasons. About one-and-a-half times the size of the oboe, the English horn is immediately recognised by its pronounced, pear-shaped bell. The sound is similar to, if slightly less honky than, the oboe, thickening nicely in the lower register. It is both a mellow melody instrument and a handy softener for the wind section’s overall texture.

Frequency Range

165 – 932 Hz

Tube Length

93 cm

Why not download our iPad app, ‘The Orchestra’, to learn even more?

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Did you know?

The earliest known orchestral part specifically for the instrument is in Niccolò Jommellis opera Ezio written around 1749.