June 27, 2013  |  News

This week, Third Wheel had the honor of performing at the International Double Reed Society conference in Redlands. These events bring together double reed players (oboe and bassoon) from all over the world for a few days of concerts, lectures and fun.

We performed our program Locally Grown Chamber Music, and we were joined by two of the composers — Jenni Brandon and Michael Kibbe. It is so much fun to bring this program to new audiences, and always a treat to have our wonderful composers in the audience.

After our performance, we went to check out the exhibit hall. Karin and I did our best to enjoy the tables and tables full of reedmaking supplies, tools, cane, and of course oboes and bassoons. There wasn’t much that applied to our instruments, and we were about to leave when we spotted an enormous instrument in one of the rooms. We immediately grabbed Rebecca to go check it out. These wonderful German vendors explained to us that it is a Baroque contrabassoon. What an amazing sound!!

Here’s Rebecca with the instrument, it was hard to get the entire thing to fit in the frame of the camera!

The reedmaker from the company demonstrated the instrument for us. The reeds were enormous, and he said that this one was still new and had too big of an opening — so he had to hold it closed with a clothespin. It was incredible!


There are few other places where you can hear instruments as unique as this. We had a wonderful time being among the double reeders!