Arthur Haswell Flute Repairs
Monel flute made in 1934 by Kurzendorfer. German silver (nickel) keywork, closed G#, one-piece body, made to pitch A=440.
Rudall Carte pioneered the use of new alloys in flutemaking with the introduction of what it called Monel during the 1920s. It was at first used to line headjoints, while complete flutes were made from 1930, aimed at the professional market. They were tremendously successful and are likely to have become widely accepted, but for the outbreak of war in 1939 that brought all flutemaking to a standstill. When work resumed the company, like many in Britain, struggled to make headway, especially as purchase tax was set at 50%. Monel flutes were one of several areas of flutemaking that never got going again.
Monel was hard and difficult to work; because it could not be rolled, the tone holes were topped with silver caps onto which the pads could close. These can be prone to damage but all on this flute all are excellent.
The flute plays with a distinctive sound that combines richness and sweetness with power. It deserves to be used as a daily player at home and in company.
This flute was bought new by the present owner’s grandfather, who played professionally in Scotland, and has remained in the family with little further use over the years. Condition is excellent, with no wear to the mechanism. The padding is probably original and functions sufficiently to allow an assessment of the flute's sound and character, but a repad would be desirable and this is reflected in the price.
The flute comes with all its original Carte accessories: cleaning rod; case in excellent condition complete with extremely rare key still attached by silk ribbon; and a top-of-the-range Rudall Carte Morocco leather outer wrapper which is also in remarkably fine condition.
Monel flutes come on to the market rarely, and we have never seen such a good one. With the addition of all its original accessories - including the rarest of all, the key! - this is a flute to be treasured as well as played and enjoyed.
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