Bass Recorder in f after Denner,
a=415 Hz, boxwood with double-holes, Baroque (English) fingering.
Since the original is higher than the standard a=415 pitch, it was necessary to enlarge the instrument.



Johann Christoph Denner, Nürnberg (1655 – 1707)
Mark: I C DENNER scrolled with rolled ends

About 22 bass-recorders made by Johann Christoph are still extant, one of them made completely from ivory. (Nikkel)
Our model is modelled on an instrument in private a private collection. It has a two-octave range and is made of boxwood. These were good reasons to take this instrument as model, although the pitch is at ca. a=435 Hz. (Chorton).
Johann Christoph was baptised on 3 August 1655 at Leipzig and was buried on 26 April 1707 at Nuremberg. His childhood was spent at Leipzig, where his parents moved between 1653 and 1654. Aged about 11 years old he moved with his family back to Nuremberg and he learned from his father the craft of making hunt-lures and hunting horns.
Soon after his time as journeyman in 1680, he began making woodwind-instruments. (see the above mentioned early-baroque soprano recorder). From 1694 he called himself “Flötenmacher” (flute-maker) and received “Meisterrecht” becoming a master woodwind maker.
Two of his sons, Jakob (b.1681) and Johann David (b. 1691) continued their father’s craft. Jakob in particular became a celebrated maker.
Johann Christoph, together with Johann Schell, was probably the first in Germany making “französische Instrumenta” (instruments in the French style). We can say with certainty that this refers to woodwinds (oboes, transversflutes and recorders) with the new late-baroque conical bore. These innovations are attributed to the Hotteterre family of woodwind instrument makers.
Already in 1694 Johann Christoph delivered to the Nürnberger Rat (Nuremberg Council) two “frantzesisches Fletten” or “Opera-Flöten”. (French flutes or opera-flutes)
Johann Christoph is considered to be one of the most outstanding makers of the 18th c. in Germany. (Nikkel)


Lit.: Herbert Heyde „Historische Musikinstrumente im Bachhaus Eisenach, Eisenach 1976.
G.M. Klemisch, „Zur Bauweise der Blockflöte um 1700 und Möglichkeiten des Nachbaus,“ in SAIM, Beiheft 12, Michaelstein/Blankenburg, 1992, S. 47
Ekkehart Nikkel, „Der Holzblasinstrumentenbau in der Freien Reichsstadt Nürnberg“, München 1971, ISBN 3-87397-008-2
William Waterhouse, „The New Langwill Index“ London, 1993, ISBN 0-946113-04-1
Pillip T. Young , 4900 Historical Woodwind Instruments, London 1993