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Bressan

Voice flute in D after P. Bressan, A:415 or A:440 Hz

Peter Bressan (or Pierre Jaillard) (1685-1731) moved from France to London where he became one of the most famous woodwind makers of his time. He is considered the founder of the English school of recorder making, a school continued by the Stanesbys, Bradbury and Schuchart. Many of Bressan's recorders survived. Most of them are ornamented with ivory mounts.

The voice flute I copy is one of the two that are in the collection of Frans Brüggen in Amsterdam. It is made of stained boxwood with ivory mounts.

A voice flute is actually a large alto recorder. It is tuned a third lower (in D) like a baroque flute. The instrument is called voice flute because it is in the range of a soprano voice. With a voice flute one can play baroque flute music without having to transpose. Composers did not write many pieces for the voice flute. The Suites 1-4 by Dieupart, the quintet in B minor by Loeillet for two flutes, two voice flutes and continuo and some arrangements of the concerti grossi op.6 by Corelli (published by Walsh).

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* rosewood: cocobolo, grenadilla and Honduras, Indian, Rio and Vietnam palissander

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