About me

FFrydrysiak-fotoA brief story of the oboe maker…


My name is Filip Frydrysiak. I fell in love with the sound of an oboe already when I was a child. When I was fifteen I knew that in the future I would be making woodwind instruments. Particularly, I dreamt of making oboes, creating with my own hands an instrument made of wood whose sound is so wonderful. An instrument which gives a player such an amazing possibility of rendering all sorts of emotions and moods. But at  the times when I wanted to acquire and broaden the knowledge of making instruments, one could not learn much about it in Poland.

The tradition of making stringed instruments was alive, but it was impossible to gain any, even  basic, knowledge of principles of making oboes, bassoons or flutes. There were not any books available on the subject which I was interested in, the Internet did not exist yet… Neither were there any representatives of the oboe makers’ trade in my country. And travelling abroad was practically impossible. So I decided to acquire all the  knowledge that I desired  in the only way that was possible at the time, that is, through my own experimental work.

At that time nobody believed that I would ever succeed. So, the years of hard, laborious and painstaking pioneer work started for me; years of experiments which required creative imagination indispensible to invent my own workshop and create tools, as well as of researching and taking measurements of surviving authentic historical instruments.

My efforts were even greater as at that time I did not have a faintest idea what the tools, for instance, for making the bore of an oboe ( drill bits, reamers), should look like. After all, inside drilling is the most important element of  instruments making. So I had to invent everything, design and  make it, mostly, by myself.

The years of unassisted education required extreme determination, perseverance and patience, but they gave me invaluable experience. Thanks to that I know why an oboe should be made in this way and not in another. I have also worked out new original methods of  measuring period instruments, thanks to which I am able to make extremely faithful copies. Today, making oboes is my profession, but  it is still, above all, my passion.
The road I took, however so difficult, has given me exceptional satisfaction, since today without anybody’s assistance, or even advice, I can make instruments which are highly  valued  by many professional musicians all over the world. My work has also been appreciated by the Ministry of Culture and National Heritage, which was expressed by awarding me a scholarship in 2002. As part of  the scholarship I executed a full documentation and made the first in the world replica of  Poerschmann’s oboe d’amore from the collection in the National Museum in Poznan.
But still, as it used to be before, when I see, for example, some piece of pear wood, my imagination immediately starts working and puts a vision into my head of the future instrument which can be made from it. I can imagine its sound. I adore the process of making an oboe, during which such an extraordinary instrument is created out of such a little amount of wood.
An instrument, even one sound of which makes a major musical event…