The Acme siren is a musical instrument used in concert bands for comic effect. Often used in cartoons, it produces the stylized sound of a police siren. It is one of the few aerophones in the percussion section of an orchestra.
The instrument is typically made of metal and is cylindrical. Inside the cylinder is a type of fan-blade which, when the performer blows through one end, spins and creates the sound. The faster the performer blows, the faster the fan-blade moves and the higher the pitch the instrument creates. Conversely, the slower the performer blows, the lower the pitch.
- "Acme Siren". Virginia Tech Multimedia Music Dictionary. Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University. Archived from the original on 28 August 2006. Retrieved 2006-08-27.
- Xenakis, Iannis; Olivier Messiaen (1985). Arts-sciences, Alloys: The Thesis Defense of Iannis Xenakis, Oliver Messiaen, Michel Ragon, Olivier Revault D'Allonnes, Michel Serres, and Bernard Teyssèdre. Pendragon Press. p. 118.
- "Acme Referee's or Teacher's Whistle". Birmingham Museums and Art Gallery. Retrieved 1 July 2011.
- Archive.org: MP3 audio of an Acme Siren, on Hudson's website