Forgotten relatives: Small bassoons of the 18th and 19th centuries on stage again



Symposium of the Schola Cantorum Basiliensis on the Campus of the Musik-Akademie Basel
24./25. February 2023

This symposium comes at the end of two research projects of the Swiss National Science Foundation (SNSF), in which small-sized bassoons of the 18th and 19th centuries were studied in detail. More than 120 historical instruments have meanwhile been identified, including some from the most renowned workshops of the time, further underscoring their importance.

The project team of the Schola Cantorum Basiliensis will present its research results, accompanied by international guests. Organological questions will be discussed as well as the musical function of the small bassoons, the surviving repertoire and performance practice. Special attention will be paid to the aspects that arise during the production of copies and replicas.

In the course of the project, copies were made using traditional handicraft methods as well as 3D printing. In addition to scientific perspectives however, impulses for practice are also to be set, especially in performance and historically-informed pedagogy. A concert with selected repertoire will demonstrate that with small bassoons, a hitherto unknown but attractive colour could be regained for the instrumentarium of the 18th and 19th centuries.


Donna Agrell (SCB), Áurea Domínguez (SCB), Thomas Drescher (SCB), David Gasche (Graz), Giovanni Graziadio, (SCB), Klaus Hubmann (Graz), James Kopp (Portland, OR), Kelly Landerkin (SCB), Vincenzo Onida (Mailand), Zoë Matthews (SCB), Ricardo Simian (Oslo), Letizia Viola (SCB)

Extended family of small bassoons: 
Instrument types and history

Talk given on 24 February 2023 by Áurea Domínguez at the Symposium in the Schola Cantorum Basiliensis. This paper explores the history and types of small-sized bassoons from the early 18th century to present times. The organological descriptions of different models stem from examinations of preserved instruments in museums and private collections. Moreover, by studying them in this manner, it is possible to contribute to the history of bassoon making from the early 18th century to the turn of the 20th century, a period where the bassoon developed its main changes in construction.

Áurea Domínguez Moreno presentation at the Symposium Forgotten Relatives