020 8893 3172 or 07787 770071

Home Clarinets Mouthpieces Delivery and Terms About Us Contact Us


These are the quintessential French clarinets; possibly the finest ever French makers were Martel Freres. A matched pair are ultra rare, I have never seen an A with a Martel Freres stamp, unlike the much more common Hawkes' " Martels". Each instrument was completely hand made and undercut, this process alone took 2-3 days, until a perfectly even scale was achieved. Hawkes and Co. came to the surviving Martel brother after WW1 to help them design their own legendary Hawkes' Martels, as played by Reginald Kell, Charles Draper etc These evolved into the Boosey and Hawkes pre-war 1010 from which the genealogy of fine English wide bore instruments can be traced to the present day. The playing characteristics are unique and exceptional: Perfect uninhibited open response, and excellent tuning make for a true "players clarinet" which is a physical delight to blow.
These are, I believe, middle period examples as they are stamped " Martel Freres a Paris", which probably date to the 1920's. Both Bb and A are in very good condition. The key work, which is in German silver, is without mark or blemish. All pieces are matching and original, and are stamped. The wood overall is in excellent condition for vintage instruments, however there is one crack, which is at the top of the Bb clarinets's lower joint, see photo 12. This does go into the top of the first tone hole of the lower joint. We have filled and sealed the crack, and this crack repair is also guaranteed for 1 year. The clarinets have been completely overhauled, in Pisoni Premium Deluxe fish skin pads, and come with our full 1 year Clarinets Direct warranty. The supplied m'piece is a new Edward Pillinger F2 with a DOV121 facing which tunes at A=440. The original case still latches and protects these rare clarinets. The outside of the case carries many old cruise ship labels, as well as the name of the original owner, Dr P S Corbet.