“Michael is the only one who I allow to touch my flutes”
Dr Albert Honey, Professor of Flute, Rhodes University 1967 – 1984. Formerly Principal BBC Review Orchestra
What was said in 1982:
“I am in a position to give an authoratitive account of Michael Botha’s work, having recently had my Haynes flute completely overhauled by him, and, I can give every assurance that the quality of workmanship and the final result exceeds the work of the Haynes factory itself.
Michael concerns himself with every fine detail affecting the performance of the flute, and is not satisfied until the instrument has developed its full potential.
I do not hesitate to recommend that any professional or amateur flautist entrust his instrument to Michael Botha’s expert care.”
Leslie Sheills – formerly Principal Flute NSO and Professor of Flute Witwatersrand University
What is said today:
Ever since my student days in the eighties, and then into my years with the CTSO, and now in my free-lance career, Mike has been there in the background ,always there to drop everything and fix my flutes expertly to rescue me from those desperate, fluteless situations when you Have to Have It Fixed Now.
More pleasurably, I have had the privilege of observing Mike’s journey from enthusiastic, perfectionist repairman to world-class flute-maker, respected and consulted by the big names in the flute world. How blessed we are to have in this country someone who understands all the intricacies of flute mechanisms, the milli-angles of flute head-joints, the pros and cons of different types of padding and has vast flute knowledge that I would not even be able to begin to describe. His knowledge is able to turn the most basic student flute into something very lovely. His head-joints are in great demand.
As my professional life has progressed, Mike has always been there to offer guidance and inform me on the latest flute innovations and has always supplied me and my students with the most beautiful flutes. What wonderful peace of mind to know that, if something goes wrong, the best man in the world to put things right is only a phone-call away! From well-designed Japanese flutes to the most temperamental oldies, Mike has always been able, not only to fix them all, but to use his deep knowledge to help each and every flute to play more wonderfully. He has many, many tricks up his sleeve!
Just when I thought everything was perfect, Mike told me that he thought I should change to Straubinger pads. Wow, what a tremendous difference in tone quality, response over all three registers, articulation-what a magnificent difference-like upgrading to a considerably more expensive instrument! I whole-heartedly recommend everyone to change to these pads as soon as they can. You will not believe that pads can make such a difference to these other aspects of your flute.
Mike, thank you so, so much for your passion for flutes and excellence-you have contributed vastly to the level of flute professionalism in this country-we would not manage half so well without you.
Fellow flautists, please feel free to call me at any time for a telephonic rave review on Mike, his flutes, his back-up service and his installation of Straubinger pads! My number is 0828962717.
Nerina von Mayer, Formerly Professor of Flute, University of Cape Town, Principal Flute Cape Town Symphony Orchestra
I have been well acquainted with Mike since I bought my first flute from him in 1990. Whenever my flute has needed a service, Mike has worked unstintingly to repair the problem, and has always achieved excellent results, whether it was to simply replace pads or to solder back the lip plate of my flute when it broke off. His knowledge, perseverance and single-mindedness of purpose are noteworthy.
Mike delivers work of outstanding quality and I can always rely on him for professional advice and service that suits my requirements. I gladly recommend his services.
Anna-Maria Müller, Principal Flute SAMS. Flute Instructor Pretoria University
Michael has been looking after my flutes since 1988. He is a genius.