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Profile of the Bassoon


Name of Instrument:



Woodwind, double-reed

How to Play:

The musician holds the bassoon at an angle away from his body. The musician blows air into the mouthpiece, the right hand holds the lower portion of the instrument while supporting it against his right thigh. Both the left and right hand are used to control keys in order to produce different tones.


There are two main types of bassoons: the German bassoon is called fagott in their language and is made of European maple, has different sized holes and key positions. A popular brand is Heckel. The French bassoon is called basson in their language and has the standard 20-keys. A popular brand is Buffet-Crampon.

First Known Bassoons:

The bassoon is a double-reed music instrument belonging to the woodwind family. It plays the bass and tenor part in an orchestra. In Italy during the 1840s, there was mention of the bassoon described as an instrument with "ascending and descending bores." It is believed to have evolved from the curtal, a music instrument known in England that had a double-back bore. The idea of the four joints which makes up the bassoon is believed to have come from France about 1636.

Bassoon Players:

The bassoon became largely popular during the 18th century and some well-known players are: Étienne Ozi, Archie Camden, Bernard Garfield and Judith LeClair.

Additional Bassoon Resource:

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