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Bassoon Makers

Woodcut by Weigel (1698)

B.H. Bell Bassoons

  Link to company web site

Ben Bell, whose workshop is located in Stoney Lake, Ontario, Canada, has been building bassoons since 1994. To-date, he and his assistant, Philip Armstrong, have built 35 bassoons. They produce 5 or 6 instruments a year which are sold and shipped to musicians around the world.

Before establishing his workshop and after working for 10 years with Frank Marcus and Ivor Rothwell at Marcus Bassoon Repair in Toronto, Bell felt that the bore of the bassoon was the fundamental weakness of the instrument and he worked to improve it in his own design. The new bore is based on research and measurements from hundreds of instruments. He has also studied the effect that the wood type plays in instrument sound and he is applying what he has learned to the instruments that he builds.

In addition to bassoons, Bell, himself a bassoonist who studied with Stephen Franse in Calgary and Nicholas Kilburn and David Carroll in Toronto, also produces a range of bocals and a Bell-designed reed profiler.