Horns played by Nicolas Roudier

The horn had an incredibly rich evolution over two centuries, from the hunting field to the concert hall. With differences of size, mechanic, technique, sound aesthetic from a country to another and throughout time, the horn has many faces and playing a piece on the corresponding instrument makes a great difference in interpretation and style. Like an actor switching masks and identities when switching roles, it is such a joy to go from one horn – one soul – to another and experience the difference through music.

Baroque horn by Zoltan Juhasz, 2021

Viennese natural horn by A. Kerner, 1760 – Replica by Seraphinoff, 2020

Copy of a 1760 horn made by Kerner. Clear, bright, light and agile, it is perfect for early classical music. I played and recorded the original instrument – you can hear it here

Anonymous natural horn from central Europe, c.1800 ?

This horn was previously owned by famous hornist Hermann Baumann. A beautiful exemple of bohemian horn with a large, dark, mellow sound.

Anonymous natural horn, beginning of the XIXth century ?

It is at the moment hard to tell anything about this horn that doesn’t have any crooks nor signature. It is probably not French as the tuning slide – which must be an extension – bears the mark « C ». Very small socket ; crooks are to be made.

French natural horn by Courtois Neveu Aîné, c.1810

A very thin Courtois with a small bell flare, probably very old. It vibrates like a cello ! Perfect for light French music.

French natural horn by Halari, c.1820

French natural horn (cor basse) by Kretschman, c.1830

A very interesting horn. Although the corpus is very small, the bell is absolutely gigantic. Very representative of the aesthetic of the cor basse (low horn) : large deep sound with plenty of room for the hand to enhance the difficult hand-stopping in the low range.

French natural horn (cor basse) by Piatet & Benoît, c.1840

Result of the collaboration of the makers Piatet and Benoît. Beautiful, free-blowing dark sound.

French natural horn by Halari, c.1840

French natural horn by Gautrot, c. 1860

French horn with two pistons by Besson, c.1860

An instrument which allows the mix of hand-stopping technique and the use of pistons, which results in endless possibilities of expression.

Anonymous French natural horn, c.1880

An anonymous beauty from the end of the century with a quite narrow bell. The paint is 100% original !

Vienna horn with double pistons by A. Dehmal, c.1890

A typical Vienna horn with the famous double-piston mechanism. An incredibly rich sound, with delicate pianos and bright, powerful fortes. Iconically typical !

Vienna horn with rotary valves by A. Dehmal, c.1890

Another Vienna horn, this time with rotary valves but still the Viennese aesthetics of its time.

French horn with detachable three-piston set by Millereau and Selmer, c.1900

This s a natural horn from Millereau that can be turned into a chromatic horn with a mechanic by Selmer. Based on the horns by Raoux. A light elegant sound with still a lot of flesh, and an ascending third valve : so French !

French compensated double horn F/Bb by Selmer, model Vuillermoz, c.1935

German horn in F with rotary valves by Kley, c.1910

German single B-flat horn mod.97 with stopping valve and F extension by Alexander, c.1935

This single Alexander was made before WWII and once belonged to the president of the International Horn Society, Andrew Pelletier. A very light, bright and free-blowing sound with a fantastic high register.

American double horn F/Bb by Holton (mod. Tuckwell), c.1990