The Development of Industrial Brass Instrument Making in Britain

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Brass instrument making underwent significant changes during the second half of the nineteenth century, generally moving from handcraft to factory production. Several factors account for this: the rapid proliferation of amateur brass bands and the steady rise in demand from military bands and orchestras, the consolidation of instrument designs from mid-century inventiveness to established standard models, the improving economic position of workers at all levels, and the introduction of new business methods and technologies. There was significant French influence on both instrument designs and factory organisation. This chapter traces the rise of brass instrument makers such as Distin & Company and Boosey & Company that seized the opportunities for expansion and the adoption of efficient factory organisation, and the decline of more traditional firms such as Keat and Köhler. The establishment of a branch of the Paris firm of Besson which went on to claim a large market share is explored. The chapter concludes with a brief assessment of the global impact of British brass instrument manufacture.

Details

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationMusic and the Second Industrial Revolution
EditorsMassimiliano Sala
PublisherBrepols
Pages177-198
Number of pages22
ISBN (Print)978-2-503-58571-0
StatePublished or Performed - Oct 2019

Publication series

NameMusic, Science and Technology
PublisherBrepols
Volume2