A local woodwind shop that is clueless to brass instruments has a horn marked Alexandre (not Alexander) is big letters down the bell throat with each letter on top of the next. At the bottom of this is says "made in italy." Anyone know anything about it? I think it's a double, but I can't remember. It's been a while since I last saw it, and I was just now asked to inquire about it. Thanks for any info!
Michael Hrivnak

This is what's known as a "stencil" instrument. It was made to be sold to an importer who could then have his own brand name "stenciled" onto the bell. Stencil instruments are usually of low quality and are sold into the school market. The confusion with Alexander is intentional.

The business of making and selling stencils continues. Take a look at the current Bach low brass catalog.

Bob Osmun
I believe Alexandre horns are similar to the Panasoanic video cameras that you can buy in so many fine electronic shops on 42 street.
Good Day,
Aleks Ozolins
Perhaps in the class of street corner Rolex watches, also. Reminds me of the enterprising Filipinos in late 1945 of bombed out Manila who ingeniously devised labels for hooch to sell to GIs who were staging for the invasion of Japan. They made rice whiskey and put it in bottles with such labels as: White House, Three Roses, Four Feathers, etc., etc. No trademark infringements there!
Mansur's Answer No. 2 re: Alexandre horns
Do the Alexandre horns still come with Lawsome leadpipes and Finker valves?
I'd say buy it! (j/k) Maybe musical instruments are like stamps or baseball cards, and if a mistake is found, especially a rare one, the value skyrockets! You might become a millionaire.
Keith D. Grush

Sorry to dissapoint, but there is no way that the "Alexandre" horn in question is an engraving error from the "Alexander" factory in Mainz. The description of the vertical printing of the name is all wrong for that. Alexander horns say "Gebr. Alexander" (Alexander brothers) and then "Mainz", not Italy.

For a picture of the design, see http://www.musik-alexander.de/ (Yes, it's in German, but a typical hornist's vocabulary is enough to navigate the site.)

There was a trumpet by that Alexandre outfit on Ebay a while back which generated similar questions. As with most unknown-name instruments, you have to evaluate it on its own merits (be especially careful in inspecting the valves) and decide if it is worth anything.
That's why I put the (j/k) in. That means joke. I was was being sarcastic. Sorry to dissappoint you.
Keith D. Grush
Alexander horns say "Gebr. Alexander" (Alexander brothers) and then "Mainz", not Italy.
I had been under the impression that "Gebr." was a title or label which is short for "Gebrauchsmuster", meaning industrial/registered design. Does anyone know for sure?
Gebr.=gebruder (the brothers)
p.s. I was warned about those "Alexandre" horns over thirty years ago.....cheap junque.

I saw one of those once. I think it is a rip. Simply trying to profit from Alexander's good name and reputation. The one I saw was a dog!

There has been some real junk come out of Italy; but Ceccarossi played a well- built Italian horn during his career. Sorry, but I don't recall the maker's name.

Paul Mansur

Dear Carolyn and bunch,

It's an abreviation and means "Brothers' as far as I know -

And this retirement/older player stuff is hitting very close to home!
Da Bear
"Alexandre" horns have apparently been around for some time. About 20 years ago a horn teacher (Don Hatch in Quincy, Il) warned me away from the Italian version - said they were poor quality and not at all comparable. Since he just happened to sell Alexander (German) horns, he clearly had a vested interest, but I always found his advice to be good.
Steve Godding

I don't understand why Alexandre horns have such a bad rep. The design is copied from a vintage pre World War II Krupse, and the instruments have been used by such outstadning solists as Dennis Brian and Phillip Farksa. I bought mine from Omsun, and it's a great playing hron. In addition, it's just a super instrument for throwing! Just ask Kenny Bestt.

Helpful hint: Unless you are prepared to run the risk that your Alexandre might land on your head, be very careful not to throw up.

Gotta go,
As always, Prof. Cribbage has penetrated to the hart of the matter. BTW, I thought it was Dennis Drain.
Ronald V. Rhodes
...and Phillip Fracas.
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