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Oboe/piccolo oboe, v.kohlert sons


I just bought a piccolo oboe at an auction and I was hoping you could shed some light on it's history.  It has the V.Kohlert Sons Makers/Graslita/Czecho-Slovakia stamp on it with the medallions below with Chicago, Paris, and London, a 5 pointed star and then the serial number 2066.  Above the V.Kohlert sons mark are the initials L.P.  It is in pretty good shape, though I am planning on having it cleaned and adjusted by a professional.  If it is a valuable instrument is there anything special I should do to it? I am hoping to learn how to play it. (I currently play the flute, and this little instrument just intrigued me!)

Dear Sue

Would it possible for you to send me pictures of your Piccolo oboe? If so send them to

Kohlert was a huge woodwind and brass instrument concern until just after WW2. The family was large and originated in Saxony in the 16th Century!

The piccolo oboe marked LP that you have is difficult to date until I can see it. But it is going to be late 1930s I would think when the Czechslovakia appeared on the trade mark. The LP signifies low pitch as in A=440 as HP high pitch instruments were made to a pitch of A=452 as  pitches were not standardised. Certainly in the UK bands tended to use the higher pitch between the wars still.

It would interesting to know whether yours is in E flat or F. Nowadays the Piccolo oboe is called by Loree and Marigaux a Musette and is pitched in F whereas the Italian maker Patricola makes theirs in E flat! It is rare to come across one.

The repertoire is not great but the instrument adds a little different colour rather like the E flat clarinet does to the broader clarinet family. i.e pretty shrill and loud!!

I am sure yours will benefit from overhaul and putting into playing order.

But do send me a picture. Thanks!



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Geoffrey Bridge


Professional oboist with many years experience. Former pupil of Leon Goossens. Solo artist for Arts Council of Great Britain. Freelance recitalist/broadcasting/orchestras. Former Head of woodwind teaching in Hampshire, England. Questions on repertoire, playing styles, reeds, cane selection and processing.


Royal College of Music, Aberdeen College of Education Licenciate of the Royal Academy of Music General Teaching Council certificate Broadcast solo recitals/performed with major symphony orchestras/Music Club recitals/writings on double reed matters

Treasurer/Advertising Manager and Trustee of the British Double Reed Society International Double Reed Society Association Hautbois Francais Southern Pro Musica Orchestra/Aberdeen Sinfonietta

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