Our Workshops and Some History
Tony’s workshop is located in Northamptonshire in the UK where the oboes are made, and flutes are initially made without any keys fitted.
For keyed flutes, the flute bodies are then sent to Sophie Matthew’s workshop in Coventry where she fits the keys, springs, pads and cork bumpers etc. before returning the flute to Tony for final tuning.
For the bassoons which we make, Eric Moulder’s workshop is in Leek in Staffordshire. In the normal course of events, Eric makes the instrument without keys and then Tony makes and fits the keys, tunes and finishes the instrument with stain and varnish. After that we get together again for each instrument to check the tuning and confirm that we are both happy with it before it is sent off to the customer.
Tony is a woodwind instrument maker and researcher who also specialises in making historic copies of flutes, bassoons and oboes from the late 17th and through to the 19th Century. His workshop is particularly focused on making the complex and high tolerance reamers used to make the instrument bores. Tony also plays in an early music group playing various wind instruments and Hurdy Gurdy.
Sophie is a flute and bagpipe player and performer who has trained with Tony to fit keys to our instruments. She plays a variety of other wind instruments, playing music from periods throughout history including both classical and folk music. While she has made woodwind instruments she has decided to concentrate on the making and fitting of keys.
Eric has been making renaissance period woodwind instruments for 44 years and has been at the forefront of researching and developing these instruments over that time. He has a worldwide reputation for making top quality copies of these early instrument. The baroque bassoons that Tony and Eric have been making together over the past 15 years are a natural development from the Curtals that Eric has made since the 1970s.
Eric is also the Musical Director of the Renaissance Music Collective Piva which specialises in playing and performing music from the late 16th Century.