Get Your Bassoon Information Here!
On this page I will endeavour to give you all the bassoon information necessary for you to buy a bassoon or just brush up on your bassoon technique.
I am a professional bassoonist by trade and I've been playing for over 30 years
and making bassoon reeds for over 20 years!
The two main difficulties you will encounter on taking up the bassoon are the cost of the instrument and the physical size.
First of all we will look at buying your first bassoon.
Buying or renting is a personal decision. Renting a bassoon is a great way to see if you or your child suits the instrument and you can rent a bassoon for around £50 a month($100).
They are in no particular order although a Heckel Bassoon is considered by many to be the Rolls Royce of bassoons with models dating back to the early 1900's.
A new bassoon will set you back anywhere between £3000-£20,000! ($6000-$40,000). Which is why you'll probably seriously consider..
Now for some inspiration from the great Milan Turkovic...
But here you have to be very careful that the bassoon is in good working order. Many times the bassoon isn't in playing shape or is "barely" playable. There's nothing like a badly adjusted or leaking bassoon to dampen a beginner's enthusiasm for the instrument, since all problems will be blamed on the player rather than the instrument.
Your best bet when buying a used bassoon is to buy from a reputable shop that has it's own repair shop. Then you can be fairly sure that the instrument will have been set up and tested before you purchase and of course if you have any problems you can bring it right back again.
Prices for a good used bassoon start at £4000 ($8000).
You may come across a couple of other manufacturers in your searching. One being Adler and the other Corton. I actually began on a Corton and it wasn't too bad really. Old pre-war Adler's are much sought after, and the modern version has improved in quality over the past few years.
Most bassoons are made of wood but Fox has also made a plastic bassoon which you often find in the school cupboard, as it is pretty resilient to knocks and the misuse associated with a school instrument.
These problems have been around for hundreds of years so it is not surprising that technology has come to the rescue and enabled younger players to start playing the bassoon.
The two kinds of beginner bassoon are the mini-bassoon and the short-reach bassoon.
This was developed so very young children could start to the play the bassoon from 7 years onwards and is, as the name suggests a small bassoon. It actually weighs 30% less than a normal bassoon and is ideally suited to small hands.
Click here for information on the mini bassoon
The Short-reach Bassoon
This bassoon was developed to help children with small hands reach the keys without having to stretch too far. The most popular models are the Schreiber 5013 and Adler 1356.
Like other reed instruments the reed (a double reed in this case)..
is the bane of every bassoonists existence. One player I came across even said "You're only as good as your next reed".
If you need help with your bassoon reeds CLICK HERE!
The final piece of the jigsaw puzzle is the bocal. This connects the reed to the rest of the bassoon..
The bocal is of key importance in producing the sound of the bassoon and a good bocal can transform the sound of any bassoon. They vary in price from £100-£600. Again the king of bocals is the Heckel of which there is a bewildering array of choices. But all the other bassoon makers make their own bocals so again shop around until you find one that suits you and your instrument.