Bandoneon, called the "soul of the tango" is a kind of accordion. It is often confused with the piano accordion, although it sounds much richer and gives musicians more opportunities. It has 88 or more buttons and quadrangular case. It belongs to the group of woodwind keyboard idiophones, and according to different classification belongs to the aerophones.


The name of the instrument derives from the name of its creator. It was designed by Heinrich Band, who at the age of 29 years, in December 1850, placed the first copies of this instrument for sale in his shop in Krefeld, Germany.

Originally it was used to play religious music in churches. When the instrument arrived in the port city of Buenos Aires in Argentina, after some time along with guitars, violins and flutes contributed to the emergence of a new musical genre - tango milonga. The prominent bandoneon virtuoso was an Argentine tango composer and musician Astor Piazzolla.



The instruments recorded in the project come from museum of sound with more than 80 thousand object collections from the National Ethnographic Museum in Warsaw. Together with museum staff we have chosen 23 instruments guided by the following principles – they should be definitely folk, unusual, derived from the old times, Polish and coming from different cultural backgrounds, also exotic like e.g. Asian.

Recording a full range of tone of 23 instruments - tonal and sonic scale lasted several days. Thanks to the recordings - sound banks were created and have been used in the project in two ways. The first way was based on motion-sensitive controllers which created new practical instrumentarium for use during the workshops and animation activities. The second way was placing recorded sounds on the website for promotion of the idea of the project and gathering a great number of recipients.

All instruments were also photographed and described which enabled creating of publicly accessible compendium of information about them.