Friedrich von Huene (musician)

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Friedrich Alexander von Huene
Friedrich Freiherr von Hoyningen, genannt Huene

(1929-02-20)February 20, 1929
Breslau, Germany
DiedMay 8, 2016(2016-05-08) (aged 87)
Alma materBowdoin College
OccupationRecorder maker
Years active1960-2015
Notable work
Moeck Rottenburgh recorders
Spouse(s)Ingeborg Reiser
ChildrenAndreas, Patrick, Nikolaus, Thomas, and Elisabeth
  • Heinrich A.N. von Hoyningen genannt Huene (father)
  • Aimée Freeland Corson Ellis (mother)

Friedrich Freiherr von Hoyningen, genannt Huene[1] (February 20, 1929 – May 8, 2016), known professionally as Friedrich Alexander von Huene, was an American recorder maker.

Life and career[edit]

Friedrich was born in Breslau, a community that was then part of Germany and is now in Poland, the day after his parents attended a harpsichord recital by Wanda Landowska. He was the oldest of six children. His father, Heinrich A.N. von Hoyningen genannt Huene, was from a Baltic German baronial family, and his mother, Aimée Freeland Corson Ellis, was from Connecticut. His father died during the war, and family emigrated to the United States in 1948. He entered Bowdoin College, left to join the U.S. Air Force where he played flute and piccolo in a military band, then returned to Bowdoin to complete his degree in 1953. He became an American citizen and in 1954, and married Ingeborg Reiser, whom he had met in Germany. They had five children.[2]

Turning down an offer of a stipend to attend Harvard University, he began to work for flute maker Verne Q. Powell. Inspired by a Telemann concert in 1955 he began to make recorders.[3] Bernard Krainis, founder of New York Pro Musica, purchased one of von Huene's recorders, and he soon obtained enough orders for more instruments to open his own shop in Waltham, Massachusetts. He was awarded a Guggenheim Fellowship in 1966[1] which allowed him to work with Moeck to develop their Rottenburgh model line of Baroque recorders.[4] He also helped Zen-On develop a line of high-quality plastic recorders.[5] In 1980 he and his wife opened a retail division, The Early Music Shop of New England, to sell other brands of instruments. Their store and workshop is now operated by their son Patrick von Huene. They were involved in the founding of the Boston Early Music Festival and were charter members of the Boston Camerata.[6]

He died of complications from Parkinson’s disease in Bath, Maine.[2]


In addition to his Guggenheim Fellowship, Friedrich received the American Recorder Society’s first Distinguished Achievement Award in 1987,[7] the Curt Sachs award from the American Musical Instrument Society in 2003,[1] an achievement award from the National Flute Association in 2004,[8] the Howard Mayer Brown award from Early Music America in 2005,[9] and an honorary doctorate from Bowdoin College in 1984.[10]


  1. ^ a b c Adkins, Cecil (2007). "American Musical Instrument Society: The Curt Sachs Award 2003". Retrieved 2016-07-09.
  2. ^ a b Marquard, Bryan (May 13, 2016). "Friedrich von Huene, 87, renowned maker of woodwind instruments". Boston Globe. Retrieved 2016-07-09.
  3. ^ Richard Griscom; David Lasocki (2012). The Recorder: A Research and Information Guide (Third ed.). New York: Routledge. p. 171.
  4. ^ Pratt, Bill (February 1973). "Dr. Hermann Moeck Talks About His Firm". The American Recorder. American Recorder Society. 14 (1): 3–8.
  5. ^ "Friedrich von Huene, 1929-2016". American Recorder Society. Retrieved 2016-07-10.
  6. ^ Cohen, Joel (May 11, 2016). "GOODBYE, FRIEDRICH". Retrieved 2016-07-10.
  7. ^ "American Recorder Society Honor Roll". American Recorder Society. Retrieved 2016-07-10.
  8. ^ "National Flute Association Achievement Awards". National Flute Association. Retrieved 2016-07-10.
  9. ^ "Early Music America Annual Awards". Retrieved 2016-07-10.
  10. ^ "Friedrich Alexander von Huene, of the Class of 1953" (PDF). Retrieved 2016-07-10.

Further reading[edit]

  • Thompson, Susan E. (2016). "Friedrich von Huene (1929-2016): An Obituary (with photos)." American Recorder 57, no. 3 (Fall 2016): 11-13.
  • "Von Huene Workshop, Inc". Retrieved 2016-07-09.
  • Burgess, Geoffrey (2015). Well-Tempered Woodwinds: Friedrich von Huene and the Making of Early Music in a New World. Indiana University Press. ISBN 9780253016416.
  • Thompson, Susan E. (1999). “Friedrich von Huene Celebrates 70: An Interview.” American Recorder 40, no. 1 (January 1999): 8–14. ISSN 0003-0724. For synopsis, see: Griscom, Richard and David Lasocki (2012). The Recorder: A Research and Information Guide, 3rd ed. New York: Routledge, p. 173.
  • Ehlert, Ralf; Hasse-Moeck, Sabine (1999). "The Charles Darwin of Early Music" (PDF). Tibia (in German). Moeck (2): 443–449. Retrieved 2016-07-10.