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Introducing Canzonet!

Hello, everyone!
Longtime recorder players will be familiar with the ubiquitous black roll-up Cavallaro cases, which have been the standard for decades. They’ve been so well used and loved, and the basic concept so functional, that they’ve been nearly the only choice for much of that time.

Sadly, the company that has made them for many years has recently gone out of business. As a professional recorder player myself and former employee of the Von Huene Workshop, I’m introducing Canzonet cases to help step into that void.

I’ve made some minor changes to the basic design and materials. The biggest is that I never really liked the faux shearling lining that Cavallaro cases used for padding. It can leave fuzz behind, gets sticky when instruments have been excessively oiled, and can potentially snag on the pins and corners of historical styles of keywork. So instead I’m using a fine untreated natural cotton lining, with a thick quilt batting. This combination provides at least as much padding as the shearling did, but it’s cleaner and smoother. The untreated cotton is a lovely, soft, densely-woven fabric that won’t scratch instruments and has no bleaches or dyes.

For the exterior, I’m switching from the coated nylon to a sturdy but soft cotton canvas with a water repellent treatment. Having seen lots of instruments that got musty, moldy, and mildewy from being put away damp and then sealed into nylon cases, I think this fabric will provide a nice balance between protection from the elements and breathability.

That said, I do know that some players prioritize protection from the elements! I ride my bike most places I go and in all weather, so I understand the need for more impervious materials, too. So I will also offer options for materials that are more impervious to air and water alike.

I’m also using a different style of buckle that I think are quicker to use, and making some less obvious changes to the basic construction.

About me: I’m a professional recorder player, and I also run a business called Dill Pickle Gear making custom bicycle luggage. I’m a constant tinkerer, and I love coming up with new designs for bags and cases or thinking of ways to make existing ones better. In my musical life I’m also a huge proponent of new developments in recorder design, particularly the Mollenhauer Helder; and of the work of living composers writing for newer recorder models. So as I get this site up and running, I’ll be offering some of these new compositions for sale as downloads in order to make them as widely available as possible. This is not to say that I don’t love historical recorders and perform Renaissance and Baroque music too! I very much do, and that will never change. But I also don’t think that the development of our instrument and its repertoire needs to end at 1750, and want to do my part to help it continue.

So, welcome to Canzonet and please be in touch! I would love to hear your comments and feedback.

Emily O’Brien

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