Double Contrabass Flute

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The double contrabass flute is the largest and lowest in the flute family of instruments. It is pitched in C and a whole three octaves lower than a traditional concert flute seen in most orchestras. This cumbersome flute can be as long as 5m and as heavy as 12kg. It is most commonly found in large flute ensembles.
History of the Double Contrabass Flute
The double contrabass flute is still a young creation but it has a long history as a member of the flute family of instruments. For a great many years, the bass flute was the lowest flute in this family and before the 20th century the alto flute would cover the lowest pitch range.Early versions of the bass flute include the albisiphone created by Italian flautist Abelardo Albisi in 1910. As flute ensembles began to emerge in the later part of the 20th century, a demand for flutes in a lower range became more commonplace. Katsuichi Kotato created an experimental version of the soprano flute in F during the 1980s and would go on to create a contrabass flute in 1988. The kotato flute company then produced the rare double contrabass flute with only four models created. The double contrabass flute in C has a low range of two octaves below a bass flute and is today featured in the Florida Flute Orchestra.
Inventor: Kotato & Fukushima

Where to Buy

£1,000 - £3,000

Hear the Double Contrabass Flute

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How to Play

A type of flute played by blowing air into the mouthpiece and covering the tone holes to change the pitch of the sound produced.

In Popular Music

The double contrabass flute is an extremely rare instrument and thus there is no known credited recordings of it in popular music

Famous Players

Hans Ulrich Lehmann, Peter Sheridan

Close Relations

Contrabass Flute, Subcontrabass Flute
Video Credit: Great Big Story
Understanding the Double Contrabass Flute
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United States


21st century






Instruments of Music

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