Hi everyone: I think I am also one of those purists who think that
there had to be a good reason for the variations on the Theme holes
(or "snake-bites" as some people call them) on rolls by Duo-Art,
Themodist, Artrio Angelus, Voltem and other companies. I have looked
at quite a few of these rolls and see that sometime there may be
a tiny set of holes, or there may be extended holes over several feet.
To me these companies made different size holes and did it for a reason
and that is a reason that I also have never recut any of my fine
Duo-Art rolls. When a perforator comes available that will duplicate
these Theme holes exactly like the original rolls, then I will offer
some of my fine rolls to be recut.
I am pleased to say that I do have over 75 rolls in my collection
and I really enjoy them. To me they are just fine. I know that
Paderewski, Busoni, Rachmaninoff, Volavy, Leginska, Armbruster and
some of the other great pianists will never sit at the piano in my
living room to play and, to me, I really enjoy listening to their roll
performances. Back in 1923, Ervin Nyiregyhazi did sit at my Knabe and
play; unfortunately I was not around at the time to hear him play.
I was not born yet!
I do have a roll auction on my web site and there are a number of
various roll company recuts of Duo-Art and Ampico and Welte that are
available to those who want some recut rolls versus the old original
rolls. For those who want original rolls I also have them. Visit
There is also a group of Wilcox and White Voltem rolls that have the
Theme perforations on them. They are similar to the Artrio Angelus
rolls but do not have the full Artrio Angelus expression. Some of
these rolls also have the soft pedal and you can put them on your
Duo-Art, Artrio Angelus, Angelus, or other Themodist 88-note player
piano and pedal away and add your own expression to them as you see
fit. A great set of rolls and some of them also have photographs
pasted onto the roll leaders. Very nice set! If you look at the Theme
perforations on the sides of the rolls you can get a very good idea of
the variations. Well, that's my two cents worth.
Larry Norman - from the Beautiful Blue Ridge mountains of Virginia,
where last week it was up in the 70s and 80s and on Saturday we had
snow! Don't know if spring is coming or winter isn't over!