This blog is dedicated to the sublime instruments called nose flutes and which produce the most divine sound ever. We have chosen to discard all the native models from S. Pacific and Asia, for they need fingering to be played. We'll concentrate on "buccal cavity driven" nose flutes : the well patented and trademarked metal or plastic ones, plus, by a condemnable indulgence, some wooden craft or home-made productions.

Oct 29, 2011

Review : Heinrich Handler's nose flutes

Mr Handler is an Austrian man in his eighties, who produces Nasenflöten very near the perfection. In the 1980's, he rediscovered the 1930's Styrian nose flute, studied archives and photos, began to test and improve them, and then created his own models.

I received 2 flutes bought at Steirisches-Volksliedwerk, the "large" and the "small" models.

Both flutes were protected in very nice little pouches, made by Mrs Handler, and accompanied with a notice beginning by a little poem. Everything looks like having been made with the heart, a lot of care, and a precise craftsmanship.

The large model is rather built on the same technical specifications than the small one : same air duct length (2.2 cm), same very thin mouth hole (1.8 cm x 0.3 cm), and an air entrance quite similar, but a bit narrower on the small flute.
Only the mouth cap is longer on the large model, where the air duct cover is made in 3 parts, two of them following the sides all the flute long.

The large model :

The small model :

All Handler's Nose flutes are hand-free models, with a long horizontal drilling through the air duct cover, with gently tapered ending holes, allowing to pass a leather or elastic cord.

Handler's flutes are made of fruit tree wood, but also in maple or yew. Some are two colored wood mixed.

They wear the Heinrich Handler's monogram : a capital H between two points.

The precision of the work (sharp and neat labium) allied to sharp technical specifications (very narrow mouth hole) and quality woods, lead to high quality nose flutes, with a great rich wood sound, precise in response and very handy and confortable to play.

Here is a sound sample (thanks to the Nosy Diva Miss Birdy K.) :

You can purchase nose flutes by Heinrich Handler either :
- online, at Steirisches-Volksliedwerk

- or directly at :
Mr Heinrich Handler
Werksweg 58
A-8160 Weiz
Tel : +43 3172 3743

Here you can also download a PDF magazine with a text about the Styrian nose flutes and Mr. Handler (Page 32+)

And here a video in which Mr and Mrs Handler play their nose flutes.

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