I live in the Orkney islands, in the north of Scotland, where I have lived for 15 years now. I have been playing the wooden flute since I was 13, I was on holiday in Ireland with my family and we ended up going to a session in Dublin city. Here, I got to experience the thrill of a session for the first time and I purchased my first wooden flute while I was there in the instruments workshop along with a lovely accordion for sale, this is when my love for Irish Music really began. Over the past few years my collection of flutes has really grown, I’ve purchased many more wooden flutes and metal flutes, some better than others but all providing a wonderful playing experience. A few years ago I began wondering how it all worked. I got hold of a small screwdriver, and the next thing I know my flute is in lots of bits! I carefully cleaned all the keywork, body and tone holes, and put all the keys back on again. It was then I decided ‘this is what I want to do’. Soon after this I found about about the Woodwind Making & Repair Course.
After 3 years of studying I finally graduated! The course covered the repair of all woodwind instruments, such as the wooden flute, whistle and the making of a Boehm system clarinet from scratch. I got a diploma with distinction, and won the ‘Woodwind Cup’, awarded in recognition of dedication and quality of work. After finishing the course I went home to Orkney, and set up a repair business. I will be making wooden recorders and classical flutes in the future…..watch this space!