As a practising professional musician, Barna mastered instrument-making as an autodidact, continuously discussing the art with master manufacturers during his learning phase. First, he made quenas from bamboo, because he was into the South-American sound at the time, and playing with Bolivian and Peruvian musicians. (The quena is a simple instrument with six tone holes, and the same acoustic qualities as a flute.)
Once, in 1998 at the Sziget festival in Budapest, he heard Brian Finnegan playing on a Patrick Olwell bamboo flute. This music really inspired Barna and that was when he started making bamboo flutes, which at that time, were not available in Hungary.
Mentored and advised by Elek Tihamér, who works at the Hungarian State Opera’s instrument-repair workshop, their acquaintance soon became a friendship. Barna learnt a lot about the flute head joint and the perfect sound from Elek.
In the early days, Barna purchased his bamboo in furniture stores and set his workshop up in his kitchen. In 2012, he was invited to a flute conference at a festival in Italy, where he had the chance to meet famous manufacturers such as Patrick Olwell, Eamonn Cotter, and Stéphane Morvan. Thanks to these inspiring meetings, Barna further refined his technique. He plays his own instruments in various styles ranging from Eastern-European folk music to modern dubstep and afrobeat. Besides manufacturing instruments, Barna plays and sings in his band, Peca, but always has time for his big passion: fishing.
The workshop was founded in 2013 by Barna Gábos, who brought with him a fresh, innovative approach to instrument-making after a 20-year career as a musician. For years, Barna had been looking for an instrument to fall in love with, but none of them made the sound he was looking for. So he had an idea and made his first flute out of bamboo. Over the years, he perfected his flute-making technique and soon had requests coming in. His flutes are individually tailored to each customer’s taste. Orders soon started pouring in from all over the world and this motivated him to be even more creative. He made his first wooden flute in 2013 and now creates these unique instruments in this workshop.