Thursday, March 27, 2014

The Signature

The Powell Signature flute is one of our most popular, and after speaking with our Marketing Manager, Christina Guiliano Cobas, we discovered that the Signature planning began in 2001.  It went through a few variations, but the Signature we know today was finally launched in 2003.

The concept behind the Signature design was that of a quality, handmade flute at an affordable price. The original brochure stated:

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Over the years, we have heard many stories of flutists who yearn for a Powell flute but are frustrated by the high cost of our Handmade instruments.  They have asked for our design and sound.  They wanted the flute to be reliable and affordable.  Most of all, they wanted a Powell.

And so we took the challenge.  The flutemakers and engineers who work on our Handmade models collaborated to design a new flute.  We realized that advanced technology was the only way we could make a flute in Boston, to Powell quality standards, at an affordable price.  Fortunately, our designers are creative, and we are located nearby some of the most sophisticated technology in the world.

The result is our new Signature Flute, made at Powell's Maynard headquarters just west of Boston.  It is crafted with proprietary technology that produces amazing quality.  We are so proud of this entre into the Powell family that we have put the Powell "Signature" on it.  For three-quarters of a century, the name "Powell" had meant quality in flutes.  It still does.
Original Signature brochure
Legend has it that Verne Q. Powell melted down his wife's silverware to make his first instrument, known as the "spoon flute."  From that first silver flute to our latest models, we have retained the key performance features of Powell's custom handmade instruments.

The Modern Powell Scale, pitched at A-442, plays in tune and is characterized by beautiful timbral balance.  The G "disc" allows for secure forte attacks on E-3.  All Signature headjoints are hand cut by professional flutists.  Flexibility, color, and projection are the hallmarks of the Signature Flute and its Powell ancestors.

We have used only the best materials for the Signature Flute:
  • Sterling silver headjoint
  • Sterling silver body tubing
  • Sterling silver mechanism
  • 10k gold springs
  • Split-E option
  • Straubinger pads
  • Butternut wood case
  • Leather case cover
Today, the Signature is just as it was described in the original brochure -- with the exception of a cherry wood case now (rather than butternut).  Today's Signature is available in a B foot (with gizmo) or C foot, with an offset or inline G, and with options of a split-E, C# trill, and 14k riser on the headjoint.  The Signature is still pitched at A-442, although A-444 is available on request.  Click here to visit the Signature flute page on the Powell website.

Signature barrels in production
Signature bodies in production
Current Signature case (made from cherry wood).

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