Frequently asked questions

History

Adriana Breukink began building Eagle recorders in 2008. The original idea was to create a recorder that allowed people to improvise and play in a meditative manner.

Just play...great sound...unlock potential...reconnect with your own body...soar like an eagle...

And thus the name was created.

In order to have the best possible playing experience it is important to have the correct recorder. Therefore custom mouthpieces and voicings were developed for the different breathing styles (Solar and Lunar).

The first “Archaic Eagles” already had this unbelievably large and free sound and the range of tone was 1½ octaves. The sound of a Baroque alto recorder is too silvery and weak, particularly in the first register, to be able to play with modern instruments.

The archaic Eagle had potential but too little range.

Therefore an instrument with such a large bore simply needs keys. Over the course of the last centuries all other modern woodwind instruments have had keys added to the design.

Geri Bollinger, who also quickly became enthusiastic about the project, began to develop keys for the Eagle recorders. The version from 2009 had the diameter of a normal Baroque F alto recorder. The sound of the low notes was strengthened but access to the higher tones remained difficult. To do that, essentially the octave hole needed to be placed much closer to the labium. The solution was an octave key like that on a saxophone that is operated simultaneously with the thumb hole!

In the summer of 2010 Adriana came up with the idea of making an E foot. In this way the Eagle could attain the range of more than 2½ octaves, allowing most of the music literature to be performed.

In 2011 Geri Bollinger designed a thin labium out of stable metal. Therefore the attack is easier and it is also possible to play without the octave key. Of course, the octave key is always present as support.

The firm Küng does the turning work and makes the labium and the keys.

The sound of the Eagle recorder soars above an orchestra or modern ensemble, like an eagle flying majestically over high mountains.

The first ‘Eagle’ was a meditation flute with only 4 holes, tailored to the standard blowing styles described below (see Breathing types). The starting point was to put a new, louder recorder on the market, one that could hold its own against modern orchestral instruments. The prototypes had such presence that they blended very well with modern instruments. The advanced, modern Eagle was developed from this beginning.

The windway of an Eagle can be customised to the player’s personal blowing style as either ‘inhaler’ or ‘exhaler’ (see Breathing types and alternative voicings); alternatively, the voicing can be ‘neutral’.

Sound

Yes, the sound is much, much louder and has more presence.

Yes, on an Eagle you blow the low register strongly and the high register elegantly and without pressure. It is the opposite of baroque recorder technique, where, normally, you have to play softly in the low register and strongly in the high register. The balance of sound is much better on an Eagle.

Try an Eagle
  • We can send you an Eagle to try at home. You pay in full, in advance, for the instrument. If you don’t want to keep it, you can send it back, undamaged, within 14 business days. On its safe return, we will immediately refund your payment in full. We charge only €30 for postage, insurance and handling.
  • Some local music stores stock Eagles: please ask us for details.
  • There may be someone in your neighbourhood, or within easy travelling distance, who has an Eagle. If so, we can try to arrange a meeting, so that you can try the instrument.
Breathing types and alternative voicings

You can order the alto (with E foot extension) and the soprano (with B foot extension) in 3 different versions:

  • Solar
  • Lunar
  • Neutral

Easiest is to go to the website ⇒http://hagena.name/allgemein/allgemein.html and fill in your birthdate and year

A Solar head joint has a thicker mouthpiece and a smaller windway entrance (left in picture below)

A Lunar head joint has thin mouthpiece and a more open windway entrance (right in picture below)

A neutral head joint is something in between.

left Solar (exhaler) und right Lunar (inhaler)

No, it’s just a matter of ensuring that the voicing matches the player’s breathing style in order to produce the optimum sound for that player.

Yes, it makes playing easier and the sound will be more satisfying.

Read more about it ⇒here

Yes, you need +/- 20 % more air, about the amount of air you need for a tenor recorder. A louder tone does not come by itself….

All players get used to this and it is great to learn to use all the hidden possibilities of your body.

Because of its wide bore, the fundamentals are stronger. This blends better with modern orchestral instruments. The metal labium gives the sound more presence and volume. The efficient key system makes the Eagle play easily and chromatically over the whole range of the instrument.

Yes, but you need strong, modern basses and tenors and you have to blow more softly.

Yes and No…. Various factors, such as your physique and learned playing techniques, will influence your breathing and playing.  So it may sometimes appear that you have some of the characteristics of both breathing types.  However, far behind these different body energies lies your latent or forgotten basic breathing type. When you support that, it makes playing/blowing easier and more convincing. Also when you’re stressed or nervous you’ll tend to move to the opposite breathing type.

Tuning/Fingering

The range is more than 2 ½ octaves and almost the same as a Baroque recorder

You can order tuning rings for free, which will solve the tuning problems when you pull out the middle joint.

Keys

Octave key adjustment

Labium

You are strongly advised not to touch the screws that hold the metal in place. The labium is adjusted very precisely by the makers.

Maintenance

When the atmosphere is dry, you can oil a little. Be careful not to deposit oil on the key pads.

If the keys are starting to become noisy, you can oil the key-system with special oil such as ⇒this.

Yes, a grenadilla head joint will not be so prone to clog up if you warm it very carefully before playing. Always warm the head joint thoroughly before you play.

When the windway is tending to clog up too much with moisture – in spite of thoroughly warming the head joint before playing - you can put in anti-condens. Don’t forget to warm the head joint before playing!

Comfort tips

Thumb rest adjustment

Octave key adjustment

Yes, you can attach the sling’s hook to the hole on the thumb rest.

It’s recommended. Your technique and blowing will be well supported, when your Eagle’s voicing matches your blowing type.

left Solar (exhaler) und right Lunar (inhaler)

An evolutionary leap

Eagle Recorder

The powerful, expansive sound of the Eagle recorder blends beautifully with all modern musical instruments. The wide bore, the metal labium and the solid key system make this recorder extremely loud and flexible.
The sound balance within the instrument is perfectly balanced across a range of 2 octaves and a 6th.
It has a very strong low register and plays chromatically from low E to high C''' and the soprano plays from B to G'''.

The phenomenal sound of the wide bore makes it possible to play together with piano, saxophone, violin and so on. Making music in large ensembles is no problem and endless new sound combinations can be created.
Modifications to the player’s breathing type enables optimal sound and support the breathing technique so that it becomes easier and more natural. We focus on excellence.

To the Eagle website