I guess it's some type of trombone, but I can't find its correct name anywhere.

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P.S. If you're wondering, here's where I got this shot from:

3 Answers 3


This is apparently called a contrabass valve trombone, or sometimes a cimbasso if I am correct.


  • 2
    Any particular composer or period of music history it was favoured by/in?
    – Tim
    Sep 13, 2021 at 11:12
  • 2
    @Tim Maybe a good new question ;) ?
    – Tom
    Sep 13, 2021 at 11:27
  • 5
    @Tim: probably Wagner 😉 Sep 13, 2021 at 13:46
  • Interesting, it appears to have rotary valves like a French horn instead of piston valves like regular valve trombones. Sep 13, 2021 at 14:53
  • @johnbelzaguy Might actually be the difference between the CVT and the cimbasso!
    – Tom
    Sep 13, 2021 at 14:57

This is a cimbasso (a valve contrabass trombone). The instrument is mainly used in Verdi's operas (and one opera each by Bellini and Puccini). The modern instrument has six rotary valves and is normally pitched in F, but there are also instruments in B-flat (a fifth lower). Both instruments can be heard here (the low B-flat is the one with the smaller bell, lower right):

Mattis Cederberg of the West German Radio Big Band uses a cimbasso for jazz:

  • Interesting that it's used in both Nabucco and Norma, so I may have heard one twice without knowing it.
    – Theodore
    Jan 20, 2022 at 22:18

The instrument shown is called a cimbasso, an instrument basically created by Verdi as something similar to the contrabass trombone. It's pretty rare!

  • 1
    Glad to see you're getting active on the site. Since your answer here duplicates the ones already given, just a reminder/suggestion to read the other posts first. What's unique here is your comment that Verdi invented the instrument. If that can be documented, it would add something unique not in the other answers.
    – Aaron
    Jan 20, 2022 at 4:10
  • @Aaron From the Wikipedia article referenced from my answer: "Verdi ... developed an instrument with the firm Pelitti"
    – PiedPiper
    Jan 20, 2022 at 13:20

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