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PANArt Hang

The Hang (pronounced “hung”), manufactured by PANArt of Bern, Switzerland, is a revolutionary hybrid instrument and a stellar addition to the world of melodic percussion. The instrument, which looks like a flying saucer, resulted from many years of research on the steel pan and various percussion instruments from around the globe. Comprised of hardened special metal (1 mm thick), which ensures long-lasting stability of the tone, the 21-inch wide, 9 1/2-inch high Hang weighs just over 8 pounds; it’s easily portable and quite durable.

The Hang is designed to capture the flavor of a steel pan, with a centrally placed knobbed protrusion, known as the “ding,” that serves as a low tone, surrounded by eight note fields that form the instrument’s scale. The bottom side consists of a hand-size opening that produces a deep-sounding bass tone with up to an octave variation. The sonic characteristics of the bottom are reminiscent of two of the more well-known clay pot instruments, the udu (Nigeria) and ghatam (India). What is most wonderful about the Hang is the wide variety of tones that can be produced all over the instrument, largely dependant on what part of the hand is used (“hang” is “hand” in the Bernese dialect). The drum is usually played in the lap as the musician sits cross-legged, or the instrument can be placed on a stand.

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