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Hydraulophone (water pipe organ flute)

Two people playing “House of the Rising Sun” on the hydraulophone (water pipe organ flute which is the fountain outside the Ontario Science Centre)

Hydraulophone (water pipe organ flute)

Ontario Science Centre Hydraulophone (a self-cleaning highly expressive musical keyboard fountain)

The FUNtain (TM) is a self-cleaning acoustic keyboard instrument for use in public spaces.

The FUNtain is a fun-to-play fountain keyboard made entirely out of Type 316 Stainless Steel (the same material used to make surgical instruments) and it has no moving parts to wear out or harbour contamination.

Each key is a water jet, so the keyboard cleans itself, and also allows a much wider range of musical expression than possible with hard plastic or wooden keys.

The FUNtain is the centerpiece of Teluscape, an outdoor park/playground built on the site of the original fountain out in front of the Ontario Science Centre.

The main focal point of Teluscape is a circular pipe organ that consists of two organ consoles, each of which is a semi-circular hydraulophone (water-pipe-organ-flute and fountain), along with two visible ranks of organ pipes arranged in a larger circle around the hydraulophones.

The hydraulophones produce sound of their own, as well as drive the organ pipes through hydraulic action.

When you block one of the jets on the hydraulophone, it produces its own sound (as hydraulophones normally do) while it also sends water out through the mouth of the corresponding pipe in the North Pool. Water that comes out of the mouths of the organ pipes, as they take turns speaking, collects in the North Pool and cascades down the back side of the pool.