I am József Tóth, woodwind instrument maker and repairer. I have been fascinated by music since childhood. I was a guitarist in a band in high school and later played in a number of balkan music groups. I was always especially interested in woodwind instruments and pursued this passion by studying oboe at music school. I met Tibor Juhos, the managing director of the respected Rosé Kft. music shop in Budapest, by making oboe reeds, and thanks to him I found employment there. During this period I also completed the woodwind program at the Liszt Academy instrument making school with a specialty in oboe repair.
I regularly repair instruments for the leading musicians and orchestras of the world. Through this profession I first discovered the tarogato and was immediately struck by the enormous potential of the instrument. My first tarogato was an old Stowasser but I soon made my own, which I began to perform with publicly. At that time I decided to found my own tarogato manufactory; thus my main activity has been making tarogatos, supplemented by repairs to oboe, clarinet, english horn and bassoon.
I have spent years continually developing the tarogato in order to meet contemporary musical needs. This ongoing work has resulted in refinements to the bore, the tone hole system and the development of the popular Boehm fingering system, which is similar to that of the saxophone. I was the first to develop the new covered and ring keywork system on the tarogato, broadening the instrument’s appeal to a wider spectrum of musicians. Furthermore, thanks to better intonation and improved sound quality, the tarogato can now be played in nearly any genre of music. I believe that I have been successful in developing, with the assistance of many musician friends, a professional quality, novel and modern instrument with unlimited capacity and universal appeal.
I have been working as an instrument maker and repairer for more than 30 years. My instruments are used with great satisfaction by excellent musicians from all around the world.