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Mehta plays the trumpet, bass-trumpet, a slide trumpet, and his self-designed hybrid trumpet.

Mehta has not only dramatically extended the sonic range of the conventional trumpet, but has incorporated rare instruments such as a Bass trumpet (one of two that were custom-designed by Chicago instrument maker Schilke) and a slide trumpet (a trumpet with valves and a trombone-like slide specially designed for its glissandi/microtonal possibilities by Holton) into his acoustic arsenal. Mehta has innovated the "hybrid trumpet"* ... a hybrid instrument resulting from connecting mutliple trumpets and/or sound transforming extensions via plastic tubing. Through its spatialization of sound this innovation has not only opened up an entire range of new timbral, microtonal, and percussive possibilities for the standard concert format, but has also yielded interesting possibilities for contexts involving music and movement. Mehta has applied this to his solo pieces as well as in collaboration with dance.
[This was demonstrated in Mehta´s 1998 theatrical music-dance production "Monsoon" (Melkweg, Amsterdam) for 5 musicians and 4 dancers.]

* Technical details of the Hybrid Trumpet: The hybrid trumpet works in the following way: a trumpet's slide is disconnected and this in turn is connected to either another trumpet or to an extension. The sound produced by the "main trumpet" is redirected/channeled to the trumpet or extension by means of certain valve combinations, i.e. when the valve that is associated with the disconnected slide is depressed the sound is "spatialized " and emitted from one of the various trumpet bells or from an extension. The sound "emitters" are separated by up to the maximal length of the plastic tubing.

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