Hammered Dulcimer Tuition

Hammered dulcimer lessons for beginners to advanced & in all styles of music, contact:

Your hammered dulcimer lessons will focus on your individual requirements and musical
preferences: whether they are traditional folk, classical, popular  & contemporary song,
jazz, improvisation or even composition.

You may also want to concentrate on the development of your rhythmic and expressive
technique and use of percussion rudiments.

Your lessons will be conscientiously tailored to what you personally would like to achieve.

During your free introductory lesson Geoff will discuss with you your hopes and aims as a
dulcimer player, and consequently a tuition plan will be evolved and mutually agreed.

Video Examples






Fluid Piano film links

Youtube: The Fluid Piano Channel

The Guardian: 'Composer reinvents the piano'

BBC Persian: Fluid Piano news article

BBC World News Today: 'A piano not quite as you know it'


The new score composed & performed on hammered dulcimers with voice.

'The Adventures of Prince Achmed'
(Germany 1926, Dir. Lotte Reiniger, 66 mins, PG cert)
The first feature length animation film in the history of the cinema.

Achmed Press Release

If you would like to read more information
about 'The Adventures of Prince Achmed'
please feel free to view the press release.


Biography & Media quotes

  • Composer, performer, inventor, designer, vocalist, songwriter and percussionist Geoff Smith is acknowledged both as a world-leading virtuoso and a unique innovator and pioneer in composition, technique and performance on the Hammered Dulcimer.

  • In what represents a genuinely revolutionary development in the history of music he is also internationally recognized as having reinvented the Acoustic piano. Geoff’s patented ‘Fluid Tuning’ mechanism has made the ‘musical equivalent of splitting the atom’ possible (‘Composer reinvents the piano': The Guardian)
  • This invention means that, for the first time, musicians will be able to access the microtones that are currently beyond the capabilities of the Acoustic piano. This has been achieved by incorporating the user-friendly ‘Fluid Tuning’ mechanisms’ into the design and construction of the first ever ‘Fluid Piano’. Additional piano keys are not required. The mechanisms enable each note to be tuned individually and separately by microtonal intervals.
  • The construction of the ‘Fluid Piano’ is now complete. The instrument will be unveiled in the UK in November 2009 and the first ever composition and performance on the Fluid Piano will be showcased.

  • The ‘Fluid Piano’ UK and European tour will follow in 2010.
  • The invention of the ‘Fluid Piano’ represents the beginning of a new era for composition, performance and collaboration: the most influential instrument in the history of music, the standardised western ‘Fixed Piano’, has been internationalised and liberated from the creative and cultural limitations that it has presented to musicians. The ‘Fluid Piano’ will enable an immense diversity of ‘bespoke‘ tuning layouts and ‘indigenous’ scales and modes (for example, from middle eastern cultures) to be explored in composition and performance, in contrast to the Acoustic ‘Fixed Piano’ which is limited to ‘Fixed Tuning' and to the western chromatic octave. However, if a musician also chooses not to make use of the ‘Fluid Tuning’ mechanisms incorporated into the instrument, then it will remain in the standard ‘Fixed Tuning’.

  • Since 1997 Geoff Smith has concentrated on exploring the possibilities of ‘Fluid Tuning’ on the Hammered Dulcimer as a precursor to the incorporation of ’Fluid Tuning’ into the Acoustic piano via the design and construction of the ‘Fluid Piano’.

  • He has recently finished his sixth UK tour. This featured his latest live score to film project, ‘The Adventures of Prince Achmed’ (Germany 1926, Dir.Lotte Reiniger).’The Adventures of Prince Achmed’ was the first feature length animation in the history of film. The premiere took place at the Bath International Film Festival. This followed on from his previous film score project to the infamous silent masterpiece ‘Haxan-Witchcraft through the ages’ (Sweden/Denmark 1922, Dir. Benjamin Christensen) which was included on the DVD of the film released by Tartan video in October 2007.

  • A UK and European tour of ‘The Adventures of Prince Achmed’ will take place in the summer and autumn of 2009.

  • In 2005 Geoff completed a highly successful 16 date UK tour of live performances of his widely acclaimed soundtrack to screenings of the German silent film ‘Faust' (Dir. F.W. Murnau, 1926). The premiere performance took place at the London Barbican and the tour concluded at the Edinburgh Filmhouse. The tour was supported by the Arts Council of England and attracted widespread national and regional press and media coverage.
  • 'Faust' followed on from Geoff's sell out UK 2003 & 2004 tours of live performances of his soundtrack to screenings of the classic expressionist German silent film ‘The Cabinet of Dr Caligari' (Dir. Robert Weine, 1919). This project was also supported by the Arts Council of England. It was ‘the most successful and high profile live cinema event since the end of the silent era'.
  • In 2001 Geoff worked in Japan where he collaborated with Shakti and the Vasanta Mala Dance Company: he composed a score for a new contemporary ballet production based on the story of ‘Salome' in which he explored the possibilities of using ‘Fluid Tuning’ with choreography. ‘Salome’ toured Japan. In 2003 this production transferred to the Edinburgh Festival where it received its UK premiere.
  • In 2005 Geoff composed and recorded the score for a short film titled 'Risperidone Years'. This is available for viewing on the Music downloads page.

  • Geoff was also the founder member of the band 'Attacco Decente' with whom he released numerous albums and toured the U.K. and Europe extensively between 1986-1996.

Media Quotes:

"When Murnau released his version of Goethe's 'Faust' he probably couldn't have imagined such a wildly
atmospheric soundtrack as that which composer and performer Geoff Smith has created. Murnau would undoubtedly however, have been very pleased".
The Scotsman *****

“Composer Reinvents the Piano”
The Guardian http://www.guardian.co.uk/ Saturday 1/2/2003

“The Hammered dulcimer has been waiting for someone like Geoff Smith to come along”
Fiona Talkington, BBC Radio 3.

“It's a tribute to Smith that his music was able to bring this wonderful movie to life”.
The Financial Times

“The musical equivalent of splitting the atom”
The Guardian

“This isn't just an innovative soundtrack, as its echoes positively enhance the melancholic and menacing moods of this intense, psychological masterpiece”
BBC Radio Times

“Caligari's protagonists convey a barely suppressed horror, which Smith's eerie and exotic score perfectly complements”
The Wire

“A fascinating combination of disturbing images and otherworldly sounds which yanks the tradition of silent movie accompaniment spectacularly back to the future. Smith is a virtuoso percussionist who has revolutionized a forgotten instrument”
The Sunday Times

“Like the famous Roy Budd theme for ‘Get Carter', or the zither music from ‘The Third Man' but stripped down and fed through a haunted house, the music draws out the peculiar textures and angularities of the story with real precision”
The Big Issue

"The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari is a masterpiece of German Expressionist cinema because of its creation of an exaggerated, hypnotic world of corruption and passion. Geoff Smith's new music for The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari captures perfectly this unworldliness and therefore provides a valuable sonic complement to this strange Gothic land. His score creates a strange, intense experience which is unique within contemporary 'live cinema' practice."
Frank Gray, Director, South East Film & Video Archive

“Turbo charged and disturbingly good”
The Independent.

“Immense passion and power...quite honestly breathtaking, these songs... confirm an outstanding talent”.
New Musical Express.

“A haunting album of songs... stunning vocals, poignant lyrics and performances full of passion - this music deserves to be heard far and wide”.