Graduate crafting instruments in Germany


BMus graduate Estelle Langthorne has secured a new role as a Trainee Instrument Maker at the Kunath Factory in South Germany.

Estelle graduated in 2019, winning the annual BMus Course Prize in that year, and has gone on to a new role at woodwind instrument factory Kunath Instrumentbau.

Estelle’s role involves the construction, tuning and voicing of new recorders.

“Recently I’ve been working on instruments for school children,” says Estelle. “It’s so exciting to help craft instruments that will shortly be in the hands of young new musicians and will hopefully inspire creativity within them.”

Kunath creates a variety of specialised instruments designed with characteristics that aid beginners, improve ergonomics and push the limits of new recorder technique. The Paetzold range by Kunath in particular is popular with amateurs and professionals across the world, and is well known for its unique square design.

For Estelle, it’s the perfect place to continue her training and create instruments for the next generation of musicians.

Creating instruments has been a passion of mine for many years, so I’m thrilled to be working in such an exciting place,” continues Estelle.

“I’m grateful for the opportunities I had at the Conservatoire, which helped me nurture my interest and gain more relevant skills.

“During my studies I was able to create two instruments. The second was part of a final-year project, which studied 20th Century English Recorder Making. The highlight of my university experience was performing on the two instruments I’d made during my final recital. I’m also grateful for the financial support that the Conservatoire is able to offer students, as this enabled me to work on such exciting projects.

“I loved being a member of the Woodwind Department at the Conservatoire, it was a pleasure to study alongside such enthusiastic and kind musicians.”

Pictured: Estelle (right), playing a Paetzold Contrabass, alongside other members of the recorder department.

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