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Haynes Flute

The Wm. S. Haynes Flute Company


Some things just seem destined to be. During their youth, the Haynes brothers were jeweller apprentices. More than likely George and William did not realise at the time how auspicious their jewellery training would turn out to be for the flute world. Their mastery with metals soon led them to form the most prestigious and longest-lasting flute company in the World. The Haynes Company celebrates its 130th anniversary in 2018.


It all started in 1888, when the brothers were persuaded by a friend to move from Providence, Rhode Island, to set up a flute making and repair business in Boston. There, they made copies of the Boehm & Mendler and Louis Lot flutes played by Boston Symphony orchestra flutists. The rest is quite literally flute history.


In 1898, George Haynes invented the process of extruding tone holes from silver. The drawn tone holes caught on and became the standard method of flute making, and by the early 1920s his all-silver flutes had supplanted his wooden flute production. Haynes became known as an innovator of flute manufacturing – and the innovations continued.


In 1916, the company made its first cylindrical solid-silver piccolo; in 1917, the first A-flat piccolo for use in American military bands; and in 1926, the first conical bore piccolo. In 1920 Haynes developed its superb soldered tone hole model, which quickly became the new standard in flute manufacturing around the world. Superb quality and craftsmanship had become synonymous with the Haynes name.


In 1935, the Haynes Company made the first American platinum flute for the leading flutist of the time, Georges Barrère, who ordered a platinum flute to commemorate his departure as a symphony musician and the beginning of his solo career. His first performance with this flute took place at Chautauqua on July 28, 1935, when Barrère played the Bach B Minor Suite. The piece most famously connected to this flute, Varèse's Density 21.5, was premiered in 1936. This platinum flute was the first in a long line of legendary flutes built by the Haynes Company.


William Sherman Haynes retired to Florida in 1936 to enjoy the fruits of his labour. He left the company to his former wife, Lola, whose brother Mont Allison was the master flute-maker at the time. She was succeeded by long-time employee and next master flute-maker Lewis Deveau. Deveau was famous for maintaining the company's tradition of excellence, and for modernizing the Haynes flute to the Deveau scale at a time when the Cooper scale became the norm. From Deveau's death in 1993 to 2004, Haynes saw several changes of ownership and management, and saw its place in the flute-making world falter, and desperately fought to maintain its position and reputation in a tough business climate.


In 2004, the company was purchased by Eastman Music Company, whose owner is an amateur flutist Ni Qian. He hand-picked the cream of Boston’s flute-making talent and thoroughly reinvigorated and re-energised the brand. In 2010 Ni Qian moved the entire company to a new state-of-the-art facility in Acton, Massachusetts. With features such as Straubinger pads; a smooth, pinless mechanism; special hardened steels to carry the cast keys; and computer-assisted engineering, the Haynes flute offers modern technology while maintaining its vintage qualities and the distinctive sound that flutists continue to love. The Haynes Company has also expanded its collection to cover the range of student to professional, by offering the Haynes Q Series line as well as the intermediate-level Amadeus by Wm. S. Haynes flutes.


The Haynes Company has such a long and rich history that it is no wonder some of the most eminent flutists in the world are so attached to their Haynes instruments. From principal flutists of the world’s greatest orchestras, to international soloists and recording artists, to college professors at the most elite musical and academic institutions – professionals at the very highest level of artistry and achievement every day trust their Haynes flute to inspire, challenge and enrich their musical lives.

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