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The NEW Wessex Tubas EP104 'Festivo' front-action compensated euphonium. The new Festivo has the compensated system of the regular euphonium combined with the much greater ergonomic comfort of front action valves which mean the arms are in much more comfortable position. Designed so the 4th valve can be operated by the left hand like regular top action euphonium, or the little finger of the right hand as on many tubas.
The prototype Festivo will be on display and available to try at ITEC, Knoxville, USA in one month - and expected to be available to purchase from November 2016
Did you use the body and bell from the 1150? This was something i was toying around with but with a 5 rotor design on the 1150 body.
Tom, Yes we used the 1150 bell and bows. Such a great in-tune euphonium, it was an obvious choice.
Following feedback at ITEC, we have re-routed both the 3rd and 4th valve loops to improve low register response further. Note the 4th valve now goes over above valves and 3rd loop is opened out with wider curves.
We will be testing the updated design on visiting factory later this month before going into production.
From my perspective... the valve section really needs to be revolved quite a bit. For most players... the little finger of the right hand won't reach the 4th valve. Just my opinion.
That's why he's playing it with his left hand.
It is actually fine with right hand too. See this picture
OK. As Rosanna Danna would have said.... "nevermind".
"Nevermind" was Emily Litella.
"I thought I was gonna die" is Roseanne Roseannadanna!!
I'll always think of Gilda Radner as "nevermind".
Sorry for interrupting your thread, Jonathan. I think the new euph is a step in the right direction. Maybe you could go so far as to reproduce the Marzan/Willson rendition from the 70's. I've always wanted to own one of those horns but they are extremely rare and almost never come up for sale.
I found this horn to be very comfortable to hold, once the 4th valve us opened up enough to make it freer blowing, it will be a very nice option in the euphonium world
Hey Dan, BBC has 2 of them on their Website right now. Not inexpensive, but available.
Yeah... I saw 'em. Too rich for my blood!
During last week at the factory we have been working at redesigning the new Wessex EP104 Festivo front valve compensated euphonium to improve low register response. This is real live horn development, with us suggesting changes and the horn being taken away to come back a couple hours later modified to be play tested again. When I started Wessex Tubas, I could never have thought I would be so actively involved in new instrument development, but am now - and am learning bit by bit from experience what works and what does not.
For your interest here are pictures of the mark 1 prototype displayed at ITEC (the shinny one) and mark 2 prototype we have just been working on. The 4th valve loop has been entirely re-routed, the 3rd slide has been opened out, the dog leg after valve block has been straightened, a change in routing between 3rd and 4th valves, change of mouthpiece receiver and reduction in bell size from 300mm to 280mm. I believe the changes have had a real positive effect, but will be getting professional euphonium player feedback from Wessex artists John Powell and Paul Walton of Tubalate (who performed at ITEC on Wessex Dolce euphonium) before proceeding with production.
Here is the mark 2 prototype EP104 Festivo front compensated euphonium now it has been silver-plated.
This euphonium will be exhibited in the next month at both NAMM (California) and US Army Workshop (Washington DC)
Last edited by Wyvern on Sun Jan 01, 2017 10:58 am, edited 1 time in total.
Probably not a useful thought, but has anyone ever tried a rotor for the fourth valve on a front action compensating horn? That might be easier on the pinkie finger, allow some paddle adjustment for different hand sizes, and (potentially) open up the low range or at least feel different in the low range.
Thomas J. Ricer, DMA
Royal Hawaiian Band - University of Hawaii at Manoa - Yamaha Performing Artist
"Life is what happens to you while you're busy making other plans." -John Lennon
My thoughts on that.... I think most of the people who would be interested in a front action horn are doing so because they like having all 4 valves in the right hand.
now.. a 4th rotor on a traditional 3+1 setup might be interesting. The valve stroke for the left hand could potentially be much shorter and quicker, and would allow for some interesting setups. I activate my 5th rotor on my 5 valve kind with the thumb of my left hand. It's very comfortable
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