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Spiral circular bass or contrabass tuba. Traditionally made of brass, it is now often made of fibreglass for lightness. The helicon was probably first developed in Russia but was perfected in Vienna in 1849 by Ignaz Stowasser, who manufactured it in various sizes. John Philip Sousa designed a removable and rotatable bell for the instrument in 1892, giving the new design his own name. Designed for portability, the instruments have become standard in marching bands.
Variants of SOUSAPHONE
sousaphone or helicon
This entry comes from Encyclopædia Britannica Concise. For the full entry on sousaphone, visit Britannica.com.