Show Summary Details

Page of

Printed from Grove Music Online. Grove is a registered trademark. Under the terms of the licence agreement, an individual user may print out a single article for personal use (for details see Privacy Policy).

date: 14 November 2019

Cooper, Albert Kendall locked

  • Niall O’Loughlin


(b Hull, April 12, 1924; d London, Jan 25, 2011). English flute maker. An only child whose father played the flute, he learned to play the saxophone and clarinet in school, where he excelled at metalwork and woodwork. At the age of 14 he left school to become an apprentice under Thomas Hinde at Rudall Carte & Co in London, but was called for military service in 1942. In 1945 he returned to Rudall Carte, married, and moved to Clapham, where he lived for the rest of his life. In 1958 he established an independent flute-repair business in a small shed in his garden. Soon, he decided to make flutes instead. Working by empirical methods and with the help of Elmer Cole and William Bennett, he investigated afresh all the relevant measurements, for example hole sizes, their positions, length, bore size, and rise of keys, in order to establish optimum values for his instruments. The Cooper Scale was widely adopted. Doing virtually all his work by hand in his very simple workshop, he showed outstanding craftsmanship in many flutes of all sizes. These instruments, produced for James Galway, Christopher Taylor, Richard Taylor, Susan Milan, and other leading players, are notable for their beautiful, even tone and fine intonation. The full range of C flutes, piccolos, and alto and bass flutes are typically made of sterling silver, but Cooper built a few concert flutes in gold with elaborate engravings, notably those for James Galway. He published ...

You do not currently have access to this article


Please login to access the full content.


Please subscribe to access the full content.