A conversation with Megan Kenny
Meagan Kenny has performed from the concert halls of Europe to the MSO in Melbourne; in Clifton Hill classrooms or at spectacular corporate nights; at philanthropic soirees or on radio, television or film; with orchestras, rock groups, choirs, trios or dancers, Megan Kenny’s renowned music virtuosity and magnetic exuberance captivate audiences wherever she performs.
“My first reaction when I played a Temby Elite Flute was that it probably had a $10,000 (plus) price tag. I couldn’t believe it when David said that it was actually around 1/3 of that figure – I had to own one immediately”
Megan Kenny: The key positioning and shapes help to give me a very balanced and comfortable hand placement so I feel at one with my flute always.
David Temby: The shapes of our keys help beginners to locate fingers and hands in the best position for technique development. Even .1mm in a key location or shape makes a huge difference to skill level development rates – It’s great that professional players also appreciate the feel of our flutes.
Tone Holes and Posts
Total accuracy of intonation and evenness of tone are achieved in the main part by locating tone holes in precise positions and by making perfectly shaped and accurately sized tone hole risers with rolled tops. We use an incredibly complex and accurate machine that we have made to achieve the ultimate in precision. See also the hand finished posts for mounting keywork to the body.
Our thumb key shapes are very comfortable and allow the player’s thumb to flow easily over this area whilst retaining secure and comfortable hand balance. All our keys are hand finished for smooth feel and flowing shapes.
The Split Mechanism
When you advance to playing in the third octave most students find it hard to centre high E and F without accidentally sometimes jumping to higher notes and /or sounding a bit uneven in volume or tone on these notes – how embarrassing! the split E mechanism allows the keywork to “vent” properly to help you to “nail” these notes.
You will see that the two keys in the centre on all our models are not attached to a single rod like normal student flutes – look at our Split E mechanism – the two keys can operate together on the low notes and independently on the high E fingering. Also note the adjusting screw for micro fine tunings.
We fit fine adjustment screws for most keys to enable quick and accurate micro mechanism corrections. This means that your flute can always be in optimum playing condition. We place them in the most effective secure positions – behind the keys not on top.
The Headjoint and Lip Plate
Megan Kenny: I really love the lip plate because it is shaped to be very comfortable for me. I know that my students and colleagues who play Temby flutes feel the same way.
David Temby: Our lip plate is slightly concave so that it hugs the upper chin area more closely and helps to centre the embouchure easier.
The Embouchure Hole
Megan Kenny: The chamfered embouchure hole design helps to focus my airstream and allows me to achieve a more focussed and strong sound with no more effort – it’s easy to play.
I find that the design of the handcrafted headjoint allows me to achieve with maximum projection and the full range of dynamics – with ease.
David Temby: The design of the headjoint/embouchure plate and hole is arguably the most important part of the flute making process. We handcraft every headjoint to meet most artist’s requirements including the hand chamfering and finishing of the hole. Our designs help to create a more defined airstream even for beginners on their first try so that good sound production and note centering are easier. Our tapered headjoint tube is powerful and helps players of all levels produce more volume.
Megan Kenny: As a professional flautist I need my flute to have a smooth, quiet and precise mechanism so that I can play as fast as I like. The keywork feels really solid and reliable and I am sure that it will maintain it’s mechanical security for many years of intense playing.
David Temby: We make our keywork from solid nickel silver. We bend a rod of solid metal to the key shape, then under many tons of pressure stamp out the rough key blank. The final shaping is then done by hand just like the soldering together of the key parts. All assembly is then done by hand so that our fine tolerances and precise design criteria can be strictly adhered to. The result is a very fluid feeling mechanism with enormous strength and long term reliability.