How much for a Boosey Pratten and is it worth it?

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RudallCarte6950
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Tell us something.: Own and play RC 6950, made around 1888 and Boosey Pratten 14901 ( 1890 ). After three decades I am still devoted to the flute and Irish traditional music on the flute.

Re: How much for a Boosey Pratten and is it worth it?

Post by RudallCarte6950 »

BKWeid wrote: "I’ve just started to play my first Pratten....."
Cool Is it an actual Pratten, or a modern makers Pratten model ?

Glad you like it.
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Re: How much for a Boosey Pratten and is it worth it?

Post by BKWeid »

Ah, indeed. It’s a modern maker’s Pratten pattern. Modified and tweaked, I’m sure. Sure plays nice!

But, yes, important distinction.
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Re: How much for a Boosey Pratten and is it worth it?

Post by chrismontez »

I have a Db transposing Boosey & Co. Pratten from around 1912. It's made of Ebonite, nice tone and very much in tune.
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Re: How much for a Boosey Pratten and is it worth it?

Post by Uni Flute »

Flutes made by Boosey & Co. and marked as R.S. Pratten's Perfected are quite rare beasts. I have seen a few appear on the market, but haven't noticed one for a few years. They are supposed to be very remarkable flutes, and would be well worth seeking out. Although Matt Molloy is of course a phenomenal player, I have noticed his tone changed when he began using the Pratten's Perfected. (He used to use a Rudall prior) Of course, the new flute didn't affect his playing ability, but to me, there's a definite change in timbre. When he began using Olwells sometime in the 1990s his tone to me seemed to change again. His musical ability of course has remained constant.
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Steve Bliven
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Re: How much for a Boosey Pratten and is it worth it?

Post by Steve Bliven »

Uni Flute wrote:Flutes made by Boosey & Co. and marked as R.S. Pratten's Perfected are quite rare beasts. I have seen a few appear on the market, but haven't noticed one for a few years. They are supposed to be very remarkable flutes, and would be well worth seeking out....
I have a 6-key piccolo marked as Boosey & Co., Regent Street, London, from 1892 that is marked R.S. Pratten's Perfected. I'm not clear whether the Pratten's Perfected marking indicated a generalized brand or whether the piccolo follows the Pratten design—or both. The White and Myers article from the Galpin Society (v. 57, May 2004) doesn't clarify the link between the piccolo and flute labeling.

Thanks and best wishes.

Steve
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Re: How much for a Boosey Pratten and is it worth it?

Post by gwuilleann »

Uni Flute wrote:Flutes made by Boosey & Co. and marked as R.S. Pratten's Perfected are quite rare beasts. I have seen a few appear on the market, but haven't noticed one for a few years. They are supposed to be very remarkable flutes, and would be well worth seeking out. Although Matt Molloy is of course a phenomenal player, I have noticed his tone changed when he began using the Pratten's Perfected. (He used to use a Rudall prior) Of course, the new flute didn't affect his playing ability, but to me, there's a definite change in timbre. When he began using Olwells sometime in the 1990s his tone to me seemed to change again. His musical ability of course has remained constant.
Are you comparing different recordings, by any chance? Leaving aside the fact that MM's embouchure might have changed over time, the recording setting and audio processing are likely going to affect the perceived tone a great deal, possibly more than a different flute.
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Re: How much for a Boosey Pratten and is it worth it?

Post by Uni Flute »

gwuilleann wrote:
Uni Flute wrote:Flutes made by Boosey & Co. and marked as R.S. Pratten's Perfected are quite rare beasts. I have seen a few appear on the market, but haven't noticed one for a few years. They are supposed to be very remarkable flutes, and would be well worth seeking out. Although Matt Molloy is of course a phenomenal player, I have noticed his tone changed when he began using the Pratten's Perfected. (He used to use a Rudall prior) Of course, the new flute didn't affect his playing ability, but to me, there's a definite change in timbre. When he began using Olwells sometime in the 1990s his tone to me seemed to change again. His musical ability of course has remained constant.
Are you comparing different recordings, by any chance? Leaving aside the fact that MM's embouchure might have changed over time, the recording setting and audio processing are likely going to affect the perceived tone a great deal, possibly more than a different flute.

Recording and production technique can be a significant factor, but I also notice this difference when watching live performances of Molloy, over periods of time, and changes of flute.
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Re: How much for a Boosey Pratten and is it worth it?

Post by Uni Flute »

Steve Bliven wrote:
Uni Flute wrote:Flutes made by Boosey & Co. and marked as R.S. Pratten's Perfected are quite rare beasts. I have seen a few appear on the market, but haven't noticed one for a few years. They are supposed to be very remarkable flutes, and would be well worth seeking out....
I have a 6-key piccolo marked as Boosey & Co., Regent Street, London, from 1892 that is marked R.S. Pratten's Perfected. I'm not clear whether the Pratten's Perfected marking indicated a generalized brand or whether the piccolo follows the Pratten design—or both. The White and Myers article from the Galpin Society (v. 57, May 2004) doesn't clarify the link between the piccolo and flute labeling.

Thanks and best wishes.

Steve
I should have been a bit more specific about the type of flute I was referring to. I was considering full sized flutes with 8 keys, conical bores, and carrying the R.S. PRATTEN'S PERFECTED moniker. An instrument with all of the above qualities from Boosey & Co is quite rare indeed. Interestingly, no known surviving pictures of R. S. Pratten show him holding a conical 8 key flute, but cylindrically bored post Boehm instruments that retain the old fingerings. I don't think the piccolos have any "perfected" design alterations, but they certainly are very well made.
RudallCarte6950
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Tell us something.: Own and play RC 6950, made around 1888 and Boosey Pratten 14901 ( 1890 ). After three decades I am still devoted to the flute and Irish traditional music on the flute.

Re: How much for a Boosey Pratten and is it worth it?

Post by RudallCarte6950 »

Thalatta

Check your private messages.
pat
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Re: How much for a Boosey Pratten and is it worth it?

Post by Tonehole »

Thalatta wrote: Wed Oct 11, 2017 5:02 am ...And is a Boosey more - or less - out of tune than a Rudall or a Fentum for example?
The only Boosey Prattens I've seen were all marked R.S. Pratten's Perfected - provenance from 295 Regent Street.

Intonation is better or equal to the Rudall & Rose bores with the flat D foot challenge. I didn't find the Fentum comparable to either Pratten's Perfected or the Rudall Rose bores although I've only tried one Fentum and let it pass.

I am finding the intonation of the Prattens are gorgeous, warmer and rounded compared to contemporary flute makers - the bark in the low D and the creamy third octave if you ever go there. I don't know how much is related to the cocuswood material of that 120year+ era. The elliptical embouchures all look standard fare although probably detailed with hand precision.

The problem of the flat D foot isn't an issue with these flutes for me. Should they be, with the larger bore? In any case, it's great to have a vintage Pratten Perfected and a modern one side by side. I can't choose between either - both are great.
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Re: How much for a Boosey Pratten and is it worth it?

Post by ferdia »

I'll sell you one for £6k

:D :D :D
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Jon C.
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Re: How much for a Boosey Pratten and is it worth it?

Post by Jon C. »

I have had about seven different original RS Pratten flutes in my shop, even a boxwood one with brass keys! All of them have been nice playing flutes, but that Boxwood Pratten was real special!
The Hudson Pratten was probably the best version made, in my opinion, it was a little more tame, seemed to almost be a blend of Pratten and mellow Rudall thrown in... The tone holes are a little smaller along with the embouchure hole, this gives it a sweeter sound.
Here is a photo of RS Pratten sporting a flute beard...
Image
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