Curt Altarac

Master saxophone repair tech and band repair tool maker Curt Altarac recommends Key Leaves care products

"This whole concept, it's really a good concept. As a repairer, the concept of holding the keys open is really a nice thing to let the pad leather dry." - Curt Altarac (Saxophone Repair Specialist & Owner of and

Curt Altarac is a saxophonist, teacher, saxophone repair specialist, clinician, and the owner of Curt founded while teaching public school in Virginia. He studied under Dr. Wyman at Fredonia before going on to teach middle school. Later Curt went back to school and earned a masters degree in saxophone performance with Dr. Lawrence Gwozdz where he worked as the teaching assistant. During graduate school, he continued repairing and practicing repair, leaving time to travel four hours to study sax repair every weekend with Steve Goodson. Curt’s obvious passion for instrument repair soon became an obsession and flourished.

After graduating with a masters degree in saxophone performance, Curt continued to improve the tone, response, and intonation of many saxophones through innovative custom key work improvements, neck modifications and bore alterations. Curt’s repair techniques are unique in that they are born from a player’s perspective. Long before he was repairing saxophones, he was playing them. To the global music community, Curt is famous for his meticulous overhauls and unparalleled tuning and toning work. The repair community knows Curt as a knowledgeable technician anxious to share ideas and improve his craft. Knowing this, Curt has been invited to give repair clinics at many NAPBIRT conventions, colleges, and universities throughout the US and abroad. He performed at the World Saxophone Congress in Scotland in July 2012 and serves as a counsel for saxophone manufacturers, saxophone importers, repair facilities, and colleges interested in teaching or starting instrument repair.

Curt’s goal is to improve on each overhaul and take woodwind repair to the next level, completely bridging the gap between musicians and their instruments. Surrounding himself with hard workers and great musicians, Curt and the team at are quickly becoming worldwide leaders in woodwind instrument repair. Curt and his team are known as innovators, creators, and craftsman.

When Curt is not changing the face of instrument repair, he can usually be found playing classical and jazz music, mountain biking, or running.

Credentials: Curt received his Master’s degree in Saxophone performance at the University of Southern Mississippi, his Bachelors in Music Education from the State University of New York College at Fredonia, and his Associates Degree from Onondaga Community College. Curt has studied Saxophone with Harwood Strobeck, Dr. David Abrams, Dr. Laurence Wyman, Dr. Lawrence Gwozdz, and Larry Panella. Curt has shared the stage with players such as Ellis Marsalis, Ken Coon (Rascher Saxophone Quartet), Don Menza, Cab Calloway, Wayne Newton, and many others.

Curt has offered clinics on various topics ranging from Circular Breathing, Advanced Techniques for Saxophone Overhauls, and Tuning and Toning at: Florida State University, University of North Texas, The University of Florida, The University of North Carolina at Wilmington, Georgia Southern University, Augusta State University, The University of Georgia, State University of New York College at Fredonia, The University of Southern Mississippi, UNC Chapel Hill, Central Washington University, UNC Greensboro, Amsterdam Conservatory, Renton Technical College, Texas Christian University, various High Schools including his Alma Mater in Cambridge NY, The US Navy Saxophone Symposium, the Rascher Saxophone workshop, and regional as well as national NAPBIRT Conventions (National Association of Professional Band Instrument Repair Technicians). In 2006 Curt was the winner of the Dick Rusch Memorial Award (to the outstanding clinician) for his clinic on Saxophone Tuning and Toning at the National NAPBIRT convention.

As a teacher and musician, Curt is very active with both classical and jazz saxophone. Former students of Curt’s are working musicians throughout the US. Focusing on the Baritone and Bass Saxophones, Curt plays in Renegade Classical, a saxophone quartet, a Saxophone trio, a 10 piece Jazz Combo, as well as several big bands, and works as freelance musician.