How many keys does a clarinet have?
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How many keys does a clarinet have?


Quick Answer

The number of keys differs between the six types of clarinets. The A clarinet and B-flat clarinet are the standard types of clarinets, and most have 17 or 18 keys.

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Full Answer

The B-flat clarinet is the most frequently used clarinet in wind orchestras and jazz ensembles. The A clarinet is not used in jazz, but it is still widely used in classical music. In many musical pieces, one musician may play both the B-flat and A clarinets. Minor design variations exist in modern clarinets, which partially accounts for the different number of keys. The other types of clarinets are E-flat, alto, bass and contra clarinets.

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