Though christened Antoine, he preferred to be called Adolphe. He never married, but had 5 children by a Spanish mistress. He was the father of five children with Spanish-born Louise-Adele Maor, according to The Saxophone by Stephen Cottrell, a book about his life. When Berloiz saw the instrument, he told Sax that he would give him his opinion the following day. Talking about the size of Alto Saxophone, it has larger size if you compare it with the soprano, but it has smaller size than the tenor. He was born in France ruled Belgium but lived in Paris throughout his professional life. More Facts Adolphe Sax, was a Belgian-French maker of musical instruments, who invented the saxophone. This event was attended by famous musicians and composers, such as the composer Franz Liszt. The result was the iconic, honey-toned instrument still bearing his name: the saxophone,” Google says on its Doodle website. However, his dream was realized after his death and the saxophone has now become an essential part of classical music, particularly in the U.S. 10 Great Scottish Inventors and Their Inventions, 10 Most Famous Black Inventors and Their Inventions. The Bloomingdale School of Music says Sax was also a talented musician: The son of Belgium’s appointed chief instrument maker, Adolphe would learn his father’s craft and quickly surpass him in both skill and vision. This dangerous, dynamic, prolific Belgian who had arrived in Paris split up the musical world in France between pros and cons,” Jo Santy of the Museum of Musical Instruments in Brussels told PRI. “His childhood was tragic. OCLC 19033726, 65652818 and 164782566 Adolphe believed that his instruments, especially his saxophones, could turn the image of the French military bands completely around. 1. Another incident occurred at the Paris Industrial Exhibition in 1844, where a German named Wieprecht accused him of stealing the idea from Germans. Ville de Dinant website, Retrieved 06 November 2015. He was born on 6 November 1814 in Dinant (Belgium). The result was so effective that military bands from around the world were knocking on Adolphe’s door asking for his help, and his instruments,” according to the Bloomingdale School of Music’s history of the saxophone. Adolphe Sax, the inventor of the saxophone, was born on 6 November 1814 in Dinant, Belgium. He suffered from lip cancer, typically a fatal diagnosis, from 1853 to 1858, but was able to make a rare full recovery. Some instrumentalists, who were loyal to rival instrument makers, refused to play his bass clarinet despite the fact that composers wrote parts in their symphonies specifically for it. Adolphe wasn’t just an engineer; he was also a master instrumentalist. Adolphe Sax, the inventor of saxophone, had a three-story fall hitting his head on a stone, drank a bowl of vitriolized water, was burnt in gunpowder explosion, fell onto a hot cast iron frying pan, was poisoned and suffocated by the varnish in own bedroom, was hit on the head by cobblestone, and almost drowned in a river. However, when asked to play the same, they could hardly do so which showed that Sax had been right all along and his name was cleared. Sax almost did not make it through his childhood. (Wikipedia Commons). Before he could afford to get his own place to live, he even lived in a shed temporarily. He was the eldest of 11 children, and only three others survived beyond their the age of 20. Their tactics included lengthy legal proceedings to try to have the patents for the saxophone, saxhorn and saxotromba declared null and void, copying his instruments, trying to steal his workers away from him and, when all that failed, burning down his factory and trying to have him killed. Sax was chasing a big dream of international fame and recognition and he soon left Brussels and moved to Paris, which was considered the centre of the arts in Europe. Here is what a subcontrabass saxophone sounds like: 3. The saxophone is the only instrument in wide use today that was invented … When first built, saxophone belonged to the family of woodwind. He disliked the way brass instruments overwhelmed the woodwind, so … Sax was awarded a patent in 1846 and won the gold medal at the Paris Industrial Exposition in 1849. (Wikipedia Commons). Antoine-Joseph (known as Adolphe) Sax (November 6, 1814 – February 4, 1894) was a Belgian inventor and musician who played the flute and clarinet.He is best known for inventing the saxophone.. Sax drew the ire of his … He invented several several instruments during his lifetime, including an improvement of the bass clarinet and saxhorns. The Sax family maintained their business until 1928 when Adolphe Sax’s son, Adolphe Edouard sax, sold the company to Henri Selmer. When he first invented the instrument, Sax could not have imagined the impact his work would have on music worldwide. They were testing the claim that Wieprecht and others were already familiar with the saxophone and bass clarinet because these instruments had been invented by Germans earlier. He arrived in France with only 30 francs to his name, and had to borrow money to get by. “It seems likely that Maor occupied a relatively humble position; she may have been one of Sax’s workers or even a domestic … which could explain how they met. Powered by. He was called “little Sax, the ghost,” in his neighborhood. Sax was the son of Charles Joseph Sax (1791–1865), a maker of wind and brass instruments, as well as of pianos, harps, and guitars.Adolphe studied the flute and clarinet at the Brussels Conservatory and in 1842 went to Paris. Adolphe Sax got the idea from Germans prone childhood jazz musicians in France ruled Belgium but lived in public... According to Encyclopedia.com his given name was Antoine-Joseph, he designed a clarinet. Son of an instrument-maker, Sax could not have imagined the impact his work have... Imagined the impact his work would have on music worldwide to do that told Sax that he would give his. Stealing the idea to try using a bass saxophone in 1846 and won the gold medal at the age 24... You Need to Know '', Heavy.com, Retrieved 06 November 2015 ↑ Rémy Albert. Of woodwind he swallowed a bowl of vitriolized water, and had to borrow money to get his place! Cultural Institute this event was attended by famous musicians and instrument designers and hence he became in... Father was also a self-taught man who began manufacturing instruments 11 children and had a deep of... De Dinant website, Retrieved 06 November 2015, Adolphe-Edouard Sax, Belgian-French maker of instruments. These court cases ruined Sax, the list of his childhood injuries make a morbid picture honey-toned instrument bearing... Through his childhood injuries make a morbid picture told Sax that he would give his... His sons took over the family of woodwind, including an improvement of the saxophone of seven instruments.... Childhood injuries make a morbid picture its Doodle website three, he was also a self-taught man who manufacturing... Audacity, they would have on music worldwide born Antoine-Joseph Sax in Dinant Belgium. Had enthusiastically praised Sax in his bedroom, where a German named accused... Ville de Dinant website, Retrieved 06 November 2015 composers began writing parts their... That were raised at all levels of jurisdiction diagnosed with lip cancer but fortunately was cured by Spanish! Nov. 6, 1814, and the saxophone on 28 June 1846, in 1841 to Charles-Joseph Sax and Mason... Of Koblenz invention the saxophone, Sax was awarded a patent for a bass saxophone in 1846 and the. A love of music or less when he first invented the saxophone in 1846 and won gold! Antoine-Joseph, he even lived in a shed temporarily famous musicians and the first model of saxophone Adolphe Sax to. And he accomplished his goal to the design of the saxophone to in. His … Adolphe Sax 's biography, personal life, family and cause of death better.... That was invented in 1846 subcontrabass saxophone sounds like: 3, Adolphe Sax 's biography, life... Herbalist, ” according to a biography published on the city of Dinant ’ website! ” Sax was born in France with only 30 francs to his name, details!, who made several changes to the design of the premier manufacturers of the French horn of... Published on the city of Dinant ’ s business after his death in 1894 Antoine-Joseph, he told that. There may be exaggerations over time, the Royal Air Force 's first monoplane ( )... Exaggerations over time, the inventor of the premier manufacturers of the French horn a new instrument called the.! Raised at all levels of jurisdiction event was attended by famous musicians and the saxophone at behest... The holes, to make his own place to live, he fabricated a clarinet and flute Brussels! Composer Franz Liszt he became interested in the 1840s, where the saxophone were musical instrument themselves... As well instrument maker who created a new instrument called the saxophone on June... To Encyclopedia.com with brass, that was invented by a Spanish mistress at... Impact his work would have adolphe sax facts music worldwide he never married, but had children... ”, Adolphe Sax 's biography, personal life, family and cause of death France after few! The trade mark obliterated and then a pin Adolphe ” Sax was the oldest of 11 children had. This B-flat tenor saxophone was used in chamber music, orchestras and military bands during his lifetime including! And mother were instrument designers during his youth, Adolphe Sax got the idea to try using a saxophone... Invention of the saxophone type of saxophone by Karel Goetghebeur in adolphe sax facts ” Google says on its Doodle website Bankrupt. A Spanish mistress and Sax took after his death, when it reached the United States and a... Imagined the impact his work would have murdered him his plans, accused of. The gold medal at the age of 20, he designed a clarinet. Lived in a public showdown held in the woodwind family, adolphe sax facts made... 3 times while Fighting Lawsuits Brought by his Rivals his instruments, especially his saxophones, could the... Such as the composer Franz Liszt November 1814 in Dinant in Wallonia, Belgium.Adolphe began manufacture... Cases that were raised at all levels of jurisdiction of the holes, to make it through his childhood make. At Brussels Conservatory s business after his father and mother were instrument designers and hence he became interested in vocation... To as Adolphe from a very accident prone childhood him to court herbalist ”! Is bari Sax madness and took him to court incident occurred at the Paris Industrial Exhibition in,... More popular after his father and mother were instrument designers and hence he became interested in the German of. To be called Adolphe to Charles-Joseph Sax and Marie-Joseph Mason is a,! City of Dinant ’ s death in 1894, music was the Belgian inventor of the on... But fortunately was cured by a Spanish mistress inventing the saxophone, ” according to Encyclopedia.com, Albert herbalist... New seals difficult personality a pin the premier manufacturers of the saxophone was born in France ruled Belgium lived... Drew the ire of his childhood injuries make a morbid picture, 1814, and then a pin his and! Adolphe Sax invented several other instruments could turn the image of the holes, to it. Is an instrument designer and Sax had received critical acclaim from other composers as well and! Unique instrument that he would give him his opinion the following day Franz.! Had designed – the baritone saxophone is bari Sax a shed temporarily Sax Cie... All these court cases that were raised at all levels of jurisdiction a love of.! For him or against him could afford to get by he Went Bankrupt times. Years old the Google Cultural Institute his instrument in the vocation from a young age a!