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Radcliff system piccolo used by Richard Chugg, 1915 - 1925
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Object statement
Piccolo, Radcliff system, with cleaning rod and case, cocus wood / metal, made by Rudall Carte, London, England, probably 1915-1925, owned and played by Richard Chugg
This piccolo, which forms part of a collection of flutes and piccolos belonging to Richard Chugg, is of major significance to the collection and to Australian flute playing due to its association with Richard Chugg. Born in 1902 in Melbourne, Chugg became one of Australia's greatest flautists after an adventurous seafaring career that included surviving a shipwreck.

After retiring from the sea at the age of 22, being unable to gain an officer's ticket due to near blindness in one eye due to a childhood accident, Chugg began intensive flute practice giving a series of flute recitals after only 18 months in 1924. It was after this that he was asked to play first flute by Alberto Zelman in an orchestra, which later became the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra in 1932. In 1936 he studied in Europe with Gordon Walker in London, Marcel Moyse in Paris, Albert Harzer in Berlin and Arno Brauling in Dresden.

Returning to Australia, Chugg is acknowledged as having brought the French style and tone of flute playing to Australia and particularly the use of vibrato. Playing in several Melbourne orchestras and under several conductors Chugg also championed new works for flute. He also played chamber music and solo works as well as taught flute until his death in 1963.


Karen Chugg; "Clarence Richard "Dick" Chugg" in Flute Australia, (Autumn/Winter, 1997, pp.6-10).

Linda Vogt AM; Flute Players of Note in Australia (Linda Vogt, NSW, 2004).

Michael Lea
Curator, music & musical instruments
May, 2007.
This piccolo was made by Rudall Carte in London. As the serial number is unreadable it is not able to find the specific date it was made. It is thought to date from around 1920.
One of several flutes belonging to Richard Chugg, principal flute of the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra.

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Piccolo, Radcliff system, with cleaning rod and case, cocus wood / metal, made by Rudall Carte, London, England, probably 1915-1925, owned and played by Richard Chugg

Radcliff system piccolo of modern pitch. Made of cocus wood with silver keys. Constructed in two sections - body and head joint. Head joint is metal lined. Maker's details stamped on upper section of body.

A piccolo cleaning rod, made of metal which consists of a thin metal rod with an open rectangular shaped head.

A case for Radcliffe system piccolo, made of leather, velvet and metal, rectangular in shape it consists of two parts a lid and base joined at one side by leather covering and at the other with two push button clasps and a key lock.
Head joint stamped: "[crown] / Rudall / Carte & Co Ltd / London"

Body stamped: "[crown] / Rudall / Carte & Co Ltd / Berners Street / Oxford Street / London /[serial number unreadable]"

Label in case: "Rudall Carte & Co Ltd / 23 Berners Street / London / And Dublin"
Production date
1915 - 1925
30 mm
45 mm

 This text content licensed under CC BY-SA.
Acquisition credit line
Donated through the Australian Government Cultural Gifts Program by the Chugg family, 2007
+ Australian music
+ Classical music
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{{cite web |url=https://ma.as/364418 |title=Radcliff system piccolo used by Richard Chugg |author=Powerhouse Museum |accessdate=27 February 2017 |publisher=Powerhouse Museum, Australia}}

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