Jean-Nicolas Savary (1786–1853) was an exceptional bassoon maker in the 19th century. One knowledgeable commentator of the time called him the “Stradivari of the bassoon”. The special quality of his instruments was certainly also thanks to his being a professional bassoonist himself.
During his long career, Savary kept making further developments in bassoon-making. He added keys, developed rollers to be able to glide from one key to the next, and added other aids to playing. There are over 50 bassoons by Savary extant today, and they all have different mechanisms – he did not make them in series. The inside of a Savary bassoon, however, remained constant, and so did the sound.
A team led by Lyndon Watts (former bassoon professor at HKB) and Walter Bassetto (bassoon maker) has made a replica of a Savary bassoon. (more...)
A film by Swissinfo has documented this HKB research project.