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Orchestra Instruments Quiz

Name the instruments in a modern symphony orchestra.
  • According to Wikipedia
  • Quiz by Quizmaster - Jun 10, 2017
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Strings
Brass
Woodwinds
Keyboards
Percussion
Percussion
Answer Stats
Type
Instrument
% Correct
Your %
+3
level 73
Jan 27, 2013
Definitely needs more cowbell. Can't get enough cowbell.
+1
level 20
Nov 23, 2014
I agree. Need more cowbell.
+2
level 50
Jan 27, 2015
Moo. Unless it's a Greek cow. Then it's Mu.
+1
level 32
Dec 8, 2015
RT xD
+1
level 70
Sep 12, 2016
LOL! No such thing as too much cowbell! ROFL!
+1
level 45
Sep 19, 2016
Hehehe!
+1
level 36
Aug 31, 2017
MORE COWBELLLLLLLLLLLL.
+1
level 1
May 23, 2018
yea boi
+1
level 1
May 23, 2018
i love me some of dat cowbell
+1
level 22
Jan 28, 2013
for xylophone, i kept putting xilophone
+1
level 11
Feb 12, 2014
That says a lot...
+1
level 57
Feb 6, 2013
The glockenspiel is often referred to as "bells" as well. Most orchestral music I have seen refers to them as the "bells".
+1
level 12
May 30, 2013
only because glockenspiel is too long to fit very well and hard to spell. "Bell" is a colloquialism for it, not it's name.
+1
level 73
Nov 10, 2014
Agreed. When I think bells I think the tubular bells. The glockenspiel is more like a xylophone than bells.
+1
level 27
Dec 9, 2015
Actually, a glockenspiel is also called orchestra bells.
+1
level 57
Aug 31, 2017
As a former percussionist in an orchestra, I can say from experience, that in orchestra music, it is rarely referred to as the glockenspiel. It is almost always referred to as the bells. Glockenspiel is actually more descriptive of the bells when used in a marching band.
+1
level 17
Mar 9, 2013
I got all of them! This was an awesome quiz, I love music!
+1
level 31
Apr 17, 2013
I agree. We are in need of more cowbell.
+1
level 3
Sep 23, 2013
32! I was just proud of myself for thinking of that many percussion instruments. A bit surprised not to see marimba, though.
+1
level 27
Apr 4, 2014
What about tubular bells?
+1
level ∞
Nov 9, 2014
Same as chimes. If you type tubular bells it will work.
+1
level 55
May 11, 2014
Piano is actually a percussion instrument.
+1
level 74
Nov 11, 2014
And a string instrument :).
+2
level 20
Nov 23, 2014
And a keyboard.
+1
level 57
Aug 31, 2017
If we want to get technical, you could also place the xylophone, marimba, vibraphone and the bells in the keyboard category. They are referred to as keyboards at times as well.
+1
level 44
May 23, 2014
Why don't you accept "violoncello" for cello?
+2
level 22
May 28, 2014
No saxaphone
+1
level 25
Aug 31, 2017
i kept typing in saxophone lol surprised its not on the list
+2
level 23
Jan 24, 2018
Saxophones are sometimes used in certain orchestral pieces specifically, but they are not generally part of an orchestra until need be. So, it would be correct not to list them as an instrument always part of a full orchestra.
+1
level 73
Aug 3, 2014
We need more theremins.
+1
level 75
Nov 10, 2014
I am in an orchestra, and the french horn players refer to their instruments as "horns." The instrument is often informally known as the French horn. However, this is technically incorrect since the instrument is not French in origin, but German. Therefore, the International Horn Society has recommended since 1971 that the instrument be simply called the horn. Just because most people are more familiar with the term "french horn" doesn't make it correct. So, "horn" alone should definitely be accepted, and in fact, really should be the primary answer.
+1
level ∞
Nov 11, 2014
Okay, horn will work now.
+1
level 70
Feb 9, 2015
I'd like to see what the English Horn Society would say if they used that logic. "Well, we're not English, and we're not a horn...so call us a Alto Oboe-y thingy!"
+1
level 49
Dec 6, 2016
I think the French Horn is German, compared to the english horn (cor anglais) which of course is French!
+1
level 65
Feb 23, 2017
The English Horn / Cor Anglais is not French but originates in Silesia in the 18Century.
+1
level 46
Jan 27, 2015
I love that there is a wood block. Leaves little to the imagination.
+1
level 75
Jun 12, 2017
So you know, if you want me on wood block, I can keep perfect time. Some call me 'The Human Metronome.' You notice how I’m always on time? I’m never late for things.
+1
level 65
May 3, 2018
We've been talking for 38 seconds, just, so you know.
+1
level 57
Aug 31, 2017
Temple blocks should also be accepted for wood block.
+1
level 78
Jan 27, 2015
Like the changes and updates that were made. Much more accurate than previous incarnations. I can go either way with including Euphonium and Saxophone, but I think it should be a neither or both situation.
+1
level 46
Jan 27, 2015
Where can I become a professional triangle player?
+1
level 65
Jan 28, 2015
cedric you can become a professional triangle player when you are proficient in all other percussion instruments, if your a good boy you may get to bang the gong sometimes as well.
+1
level 49
Nov 17, 2015
Or you can be George Plimpton.
+1
level 73
Aug 31, 2017
the same place I learned to make farting noises with my hands probably.
+1
level 70
Aug 31, 2017
"Rex Stardust, lead electric triangle with Toad the Wet Sprocket, has had to have an elbow removed following their recent successful worldwide tour of Finland." (Monty Python, of course.)
+1
level 26
Jan 28, 2015
Today I learnt I have no idea how instruments are spelled in English.
+1
level 51
Jan 28, 2015
So, saxophones and coronets are not used in orchestras? Well, it does say "according to Wikipedia".
+1
level 80
Jun 10, 2017
Saxophones are rarely scored in orchestra works - they are much more common in (marching) bands. *Cornets* are also more of a band instrument. [The difference between a trumpet and a cornet is that the trumpet has a uniform (tubing) bore until after the final valve when the bore increases to the bell - a cornet has a bore that increases throughout the tube from mouthpiece to bell, ,making it a true 'horn'.]
+1
level 54
Dec 22, 2017
Here are some examples of classical music that uses the saxophone: Pictures at an Exhibition (Mussorgsky) Romeo and Juliet (Prokofiev) Waltz No. 2 (Shostakovich) Symphony No. 6 (Vaughan-Williams) Concerto for Saxophone (Glazunov) Rhapsody for Saxophone (Debussy) Bolero (Ravel) Symphonic Dances (Rachmaninoff) Job (Vaughan-Williams) Nixon in China (Adams)
+1
level 57
Aug 31, 2017
The saxophone is more suited to jazz or pop music. It is common in modern school bands and marching bands as well.
+1
level 53
Nov 5, 2017
Yes, but not in a traditional orchestra. They have special orchestras that include saxophones and what not.
+1
level 2
Jan 29, 2015
my band director says that only the "stupid americans" say French horn, spell tympani with an "i". Also, being a percussionist, it frustrates me that you do not specify which type of cymbals, as the suspended cymbal and the crash cymbal are two totally different instruments that are played in two different ways.
+2
level 57
Aug 31, 2017
I agree with the cymbals comment. I also think you band director is too much of a snob.
+1
level 39
Jan 30, 2015
Grand Piano didn't give a point for Piano, and I feel that Glock should be adequate as I had no idea how to spell the rest.
+1
level 67
Feb 4, 2015
I think a cannon is more common than a glock.
+2
level 31
Jun 1, 2015
You've obviously not heard of Pachelbel's Glock in D, then?
+1
level 57
Aug 31, 2017
It should be bells, not glockenspiel.
+1
level 28
Apr 22, 2015
No Saxophones are not in orchestras they are mostly jazz instruments and should not be added to this quiz.
+1
level 23
Jun 7, 2015
Saxophones are not orchestral instruments. The saxophone was invented in 1846, which was after the majority of orchestral music was written. It is often used in more modern orchestras, but it is not a standard orchestral instrument. Also, although the baritone horn and the euphonium are not the same instrument, they are very similar and are both used in orchestras. I do think that maybe the Quizmaster went a bit overboard with the various percussion instruments.
+1
level 31
Sep 14, 2015
Overboard? So listing things like the Piccolo, Bass Trombone, Celeste, Organ, Harp, which aren't used in all orchestras, aren't overboard themselves? I personally think the quizmaster went easy on percussion, leaving out several other commonly used percussion instruments that may be hard to name.
+1
level 47
Aug 31, 2017
"The saxophone was invented in 1846, which was after the majority of orchestral music was written". Not really true. A massive amount of orchestral music has been written since 1846. Brahms, Tchaikovsky, Mahler, Schoenberg, Dvorak, Bruckner, Sibelius etc etc. not to mention the vast majority of current movie scores, some of which I've been fortunate enough to play on. Orchestral music is alive and well and certainly not just the domain of the Baroque and Classical eras. Echo that the sax is rare in orchestral music though. I can only think of a dozen or so works which include sax (not including concertos)- Ravel Bolero, Bizet L'Arlesienne Suite and Walton Belshazzar's feast, for example.
+1
level 42
Aug 4, 2015
the english horn is a cor anglais omg so fricjken rasist kwizmasta
+1
level 31
Sep 14, 2015
There certainly are some percussion instruments that should be added. Tambourine, Cowbell, Castanets, Guiro, Timbales, Mark Tree, to name a few. Also Cymbals is quite a generic answer. Why not Crash and Ride Cymbals, or even Splash and China?
+1
level 33
Oct 17, 2015
i have a violin and a glockenspiel
+1
level 27
Dec 9, 2015
Fortepiano should be accepted for piano.
+1
level 27
Dec 9, 2015
Oops, actually pianoforte.
+1
level 48
Jan 23, 2016
Why are you talking about dynamics in such a way? :P I didn't know it was called that until I saw this comment. That's rather interesting.
+1
level 66
Aug 31, 2017
Yes, and sackbut should be accepted for trombone as well, if we're going with archaic names.
+1
level 7
Dec 11, 2015
hard
+1
level 7
Dec 11, 2015
easy if your in band
+1
level 48
Jan 23, 2016
I feel sad when I look at the stats and see that only 57% of people get bassoon...
+2
level 54
Jul 29, 2017
It's up to 64% now! The bassoon and the viola are the most underrated instruments ever!
+2
level 57
Aug 31, 2017
You should read about what violin players think about viola players. Not only are they unerrated, they are also mistreated and underappreciated!
+1
level 74
Jan 28, 2018
Violas are gorgeous. The violin is just the viola's squeaky younger sibling.
+2
level 3
Apr 29, 2016
So disappointed that there's no saxophones at all and cornet..
+1
level 1
May 26, 2016
Shorely youll take round ting for French horn
+1
level 70
Sep 12, 2016
No, they probably won't accept "round ting". And don't call the Quizmaster "Shorely".
+1
level 2
May 26, 2016
What about cornet and saxophone
+1
level 70
Aug 17, 2016
Needs canons if it wants to perform the 1812 Overture. Also, in my experience the English Horn is more commonly called the Cor Anglais, while the French Horn is just called a French Horn, not Cor Français (or Cor d'harmonie as I believe the French themselves call it). This seems the wrong way around to me.
+1
level 65
Feb 23, 2017
As I mentioned above the Cor Anglais / English Horn is not French or English, it originated in Silesia in the 18 Century.
+1
level 70
Sep 12, 2016
What, no bagpipes?!! Whoever heard of an orchestra without bagpipes?!! :-P
+1
level 57
Sep 19, 2016
Hard to say. People outside of Scotland maybe? Though I can imagine that Scottish orchestra consist of only Bagpipes. :D
+1
level 53
May 11, 2017
That, as the internet would lightly and forgivingly put it, is racist.
+1
level 57
Aug 31, 2017
I know right, and what about the accordion? Why wasn't that included!?
+1
level 58
Feb 23, 2017
clave?
+1
level 2
Mar 5, 2017
I totally thought less than 87% would know the viola, well atleast put it down, as half of the people I meet when I say im in orchestra and they say oh you play the violin, I say no, then they say the bass, I say no , they guess the cello, I say no there like THEN WHAT, I say the viola, their like yeah i said that, im like no you said violin, then they say well the viola is a bigger violin and then I tell them why its not, they still dont know.
+1
level 74
Jun 10, 2017
The viola is an alto violin indeed...
+1
level 57
Aug 31, 2017
Good for you for playing the viola. Everyone places so much importance on the violin, but without the viola, harmonies in the string section would be severely lacking. Violins can't carry the string section alone!
+1
level 23
Jun 9, 2017
You should know that a harpsichord is not the same as a harp. A harpsichord is a keyboard instrument.
+1
level 70
Jun 11, 2017
And a harp is a string instrument, not a keyboard instrument!
+1
level ∞
Jun 11, 2017
Fix it on Wikipedia and I'll change it.
+1
level 61
Jun 15, 2017
Okay, I've fixed it on Wikipedia. The harp is now where it belongs, under string instruments. Because where on a harp do you see a keyboard?
+1
level 73
Aug 31, 2017
If you look on the Wikipedia page for keyboard instruments harp is not listed but if you look on the page for string instruments you find this: "Orchestral works... often include additional string instruments, especially the concert harp and piano." https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/String_instrument
+1
level 74
Sep 2, 2017
Is Wikipedia your holy book or what? There is obviously no "keyboard" on a harp... the strings are plucked with the fingers as for a guitar. A keyboard instrument has to include a mechanical or electronic system. The accordion is a keyboard instrument, the vibraphone is not, etc.
+1
level 58
Sep 3, 2017
yes! I only got it because I started to type in 'harpsichord', which IS a keyboard instrument
+1
level 73
Jun 12, 2017
Wow...and I thought beer snobs were bad. You music snobs are WAY worse.
+1
level 56
Aug 31, 2017
Beers snobs are the worst because they're trying to seem sophisticated without actually *doing* anything. At least band snobs learn their instruments and master difficult performance pieces, so they have some right to feel their opinion is superior. Beer snobs are people who love drinking and want to somehow make it seem cultured. I love a quality microbrew as much as anyone, but the snobbish culture that has developed around drinking beer, watching movies, and eating "artisanal" food in the past years is laughable.
+1
level 79
Jun 13, 2017
How is cannon not accepted? No orchestra worth it's salt omits cannons from its ensemble.
+1
level 57
Aug 31, 2017
Insurance became too expensive, and therefore cannons became a liability.
+1
level 53
Nov 5, 2017
Good answer.
+1
level 21
Jun 14, 2017
pianos percussion
+1
level 22
Jun 27, 2017
what about the sitar, banjo, or the glockenspiel?
+1
level 50
Aug 24, 2017
Euphonium?
+1
level 59
Aug 29, 2017
There's no way the harp is a keyboard instrument. Not normally counted in the strings, so admittedly difficult to categorize. I've never heard the cor anglais referred to as an 'English Horn' (though appreciate it's an exact translation) - perhaps that's a US thing, I've only played in UK (and Austrian) orchestras.
+1
level 39
Aug 29, 2017
How is the harp a keyboard instrument
+1
level 73
Aug 31, 2017
It's not.
+2
level 57
Aug 31, 2017
It's interesting that the baritone or euphonium are not included in a typical orchestral brass section. While they do mimic very closely the range of a trombone, they also provide a more mellow sound that is useful in situations where the trombone might be too brash. I wasn't aware they weren't included until coming across this quiz.
+1
level 66
Aug 31, 2017
I was about to express my surprise at this as well. I played euphonium in high school band, and there were a lot of songs we played that had parts for me distinct from the trombones.
+1
level 53
Nov 5, 2017
I was also surprised not to see baritones.
+1
level 73
Aug 31, 2017
I think that I shall never see, a harp equipped with board of key.
+1
level 60
Aug 31, 2017
No Otamatone? Gutted.
+1
level 40
Aug 31, 2017
Good quiz and it's good that many alternative words for these instruments are accepted
+1
level 40
Aug 31, 2017
Whip must be added to the percussion section. Numerous pieces (notably Ravel's Piano Concerto in G Major) use it prominently.
+1
level 53
Nov 5, 2017
Not part of the traditional orchestra, buddy. We can't have everything that has been used before, otherwise the list would be pretty big.
+1
level 68
Aug 31, 2017
I would not have known that "wooden block" was an orchestral instrument if I had not read https://chris-lamb.co.uk/posts/the-truth-about-orchestral-players the other day. It will deepen your appreciation of the orchestra to know something about the performers.
+1
level 59
Sep 2, 2017
Why are the celesta and Pipe organ listed together. The celesta is like orchestral bells (or glockenspiel if you prefer) with a keyboard-while a pipe organ is a wind instrument with a keyboard.
+1
level 74
Sep 2, 2017
Absolutely, please separate them (and move the harp to the string section).
+1
level 58
Sep 2, 2017
Looked up the wikipedia article on orchestral percussion and the tenor drum is not listed. If you didn't use the orchestral percussion page, what reference did you use?
+1
level 47
Nov 1, 2017
You need to add in the harpsichord. It is *NOT* the same as the harp!
+1
level 47
Nov 1, 2017
There are several pieces of classical music (most famously Rodriguez's Aranjuez Concierto) that use guitar, so if you are going to be overly pedantic with your "bass trombone" and "bass clarinet" - you may as well add in the guitar as well.
+1
level 53
Nov 5, 2017
It is not "overly pendantic," bass trombones and (especially) bass clarinets serve their purpose just as well as any other instrument. They are considered part of a traditional orchestra, whereas guitars are not.
+1
level 45
Dec 16, 2017
Cannons?
+1
level 49
Feb 2, 2018
A harp is not a keyboard.
+1
level 42
Feb 15, 2018
I would think that harp is not a keyboard but a string instrument. If you meant harpsichord, well that's sort of a keyboard.
+1
level 66
Mar 8, 2018
Surprised not to see euphonium on there - there've been euphoniums in every orchestra I've played in.
+1
level 35
Mar 18, 2018
Got 69% ;)
+1
level 20
Apr 20, 2018
You should accept baritone for bass trombone.
+1
level 20
Apr 20, 2018
And Wind Chimes for chimes
+1
level 31
Apr 25, 2018
wind chimes and chimes are different; chimes are like a bigger and louder glockenspiel that you hit with a mallet that looks like a hammer, whereas wind chimes are just a bunch of metal sticks that hang off of a rod that you push and they cling all at once. Look them up.
+1
level 69
Apr 25, 2018
What, no Lion's Roar, or Brake Drums, or Sirens? Edgard Varese is rolling over in his grave!
+1
level 22
May 9, 2018
What about the euphonium? I looked up the answers on Wikipedia, and euphonium was on the page. Why isn't it there?
+1
level 27
May 21, 2018
A Celesta is most definitely NOT a Pipe Organ. It is a struck instrument like a Glockenspiel. A Harp is a String instrument, not a Keyboard instrument.
+1
level 1
May 23, 2018
chicken nugget
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