This year we are happy to have at the International Piccolo Festival the president of the Keefe Company, James Keefe, one of the most famous piccolo makers in the world. He will be present along with vice president Janet Kinmonth.
Together they will show their piccolos, explain how to take care of your instrument and test their efficiency.
James Keefe will explain his whole history as a maker of flutes and piccolos and his future prospects.
A truly unique opportunity in Europe!
Keefe Piccolos was founded by Jim Keefe and Janet Kinmonth in 2000. After years of making piccolos and flutes with Brannen Brothers, we made the decision to dedicate our work exclusively to the piccolo and its players, with the singular goal of making an extraordinary instrument.
The piccolo is a unique and truly beautiful voice. It is the most powerful member of the flute section, adding color on top of the full orchestra or standing alone as a dazzling and lyrical soloist. The piccolo can also be extraordinarily challenging to play. Its small size, high range and inherently brilliant sound can be daunting challenges for even the finest musicians.
Through our unique combination of skill, knowledge and experience, we help musicians flourish. Keefe piccolos are played by the finest musicians all over the world. We work steadily every day to improve our designs and processes. Over the years, we have made subtle changes such as refining our scale and mechanism as well as large changes such as our patented C# trill mechanism. We have also enjoyed tremendous support from the piccolo community. We are grateful for this support and we continue in our dedication to making extraordinary piccolos.
Jim Keefe began making piccolos at Brannen Brothers in 1978, working both as a piccolo maker and as Vice President and General Manager. A native of Chicago, Jim attended the University of Illinois as a flute performance major, graduating in 1978. As a piccolo maker, he has worked in the best of the Boston tradition of fine instrument making, learning from Bick and Bob Brannen, Alan Williams, Conrad Marvin, Payson Greene and many other outstanding craftspeople. Jim has worked to improve the sound, comfort, reliability and consistency of the piccolo. His work has included the development of new head joint styles, improvements to the scale, design of lower and higher pitched scales, the addition of the bridged mechanism, the C# trill mechanism and countless other incremental improvements tailored to meet the needs of individual players.
Jan Kinmonth began her career at Brannen Brothers in 1984 working as a flute and piccolo finisher and head joint tester as well as Finishing Department Manager. During her career, Jan has specialized in the padding, adjustment and repair work that is part of the Finishing process. In addition, she has developed significant methods of inspection and quality control to make instruments work more reliably for performing musicians. As an active flutist, Janet was a member of the Boston Philharmonic under conductor Benjamin Zander from 1985 through 2017. She has painstakingly combined her knowledge of her craft and expertise as an orchestral player to create piccolos of the highest quality. Jan takes great pleasure in working directly with performers to meet the demands of their unique and subtle needs as professional piccolo players.
Jan has served on the National Flute Association Board of Directors, NFA Finance and Endowment Committees and as President of the Concord, MA Orchestra Board. She received her Bachelor of Music Degree from Oberlin Conservatory and Master of Music degree from Bowling Green State University. Her teachers include Alan Williams, Clement Barone, Robert Willoughby and Judith Bentley. She lives with her husband and two dogs in the woods in Carlisle, MA.