Meet the Team
Tobias Kaye, Company Director
Tobias is a self-taught craftsman and the originator of Sounding Bowls. Born as the second son of a Bio-Dynamic farmer in rural Ireland he was brought up in Sussex woodlands and had a Waldorf education which was followed by a good deal of travel. His passionate interest in what makes the world go round led him through a wide diversity of experiences and studies while working in various countries in building, forestry, computing, horticulture, hospitality, child care (including special needs) and on to become a self-employed sculptor using the lathe as a principle tool. Tobias’ youthful delight in the Arts resulted in learning piano, trombone, mouth organ and penny whistle and singing in choirs as well as an outpouring of youthful poetry. When these fields of sculpture, music and the pursuit of the meaning of being human came together into the healing power of Sounding Bowls, Tobias felt he had found a worthy life’s mission and has increasingly focussed his attention on making Sounding Bowls available to people.
He is particularly moved that his designs now find homes with musicians, healers and meditators where his previous work ended up in display cabinets or on shelves.
Ramon Floride, Sounding Bowl Maker
Born in Germany, Ramon was Waldorf educated in Austria and later trained as a furniture maker in 2004. He worked in this field for some years and came to our workshop in 2009 for a week long woodturning course. His hand and eye were noticed for excellent craftsmanship and he ended up staying for a further 5 months to train in Sounding Bowl making, astonishing Tobias with the speed of his learning and beauty of his making. Ramon has since returned from Austria to the workshop five times and enjoys his regular residencies at Sounding Bowls because here he is offered the time to make something beautiful and bring focused attention to the detail. He has a passion for the warm, sensory qualities of wood that he feels are always alive even when turned and shaped and particularly enjoys hearing the first sound from a newly strung Bowl. Ramon’s deeply felt enjoyment of fine workmanship guides his hand and eye in producing pieces of particularly crisp beauty.
Joe Hornby, Sounding Bowl Maker
Born in Dorset, Joe was Waldorf educated, choosing at the age of 15 to train as a Sounding Bowl maker he spent several years here and became an important part of the workshop. He completed his training in 2013 and is now a full-time member of the team, helping to train new makers himself. Joe appreciates the varieties of woods he uses, and works to bring out the best qualities of each one. Joe’s innate musicality and joyful nature comes through in his work producing Sounding Bowls that are typically light in weight with a tender responsiveness. When not in the workshop Joe enjoys cycling off road and on, music and foraging.
Sky Brierley, Sounding Bowl Maker
Sky was born in Brighton and moved to Totnes in 1998 where he was Waldorf educated. He later went on to develop skills in carpentry for construction and renovation Sites in 2010. After four years of extensive training and experience he then committed himself to the Apprenticeship Training Programme here at Sounding Bowls and graduated in 2014 as a Master Maker. Sky feels an affinity to the natural element of wood and it’s versatility to be shaped into form. Sky enjoys every aspect of making Sounding Bowls. Inspired by the concept and the flow of the curves he dedicates an ever increasing skill to bringing out the innate musicality of each design, each piece of wood, taking an individual interest in each commission he handles. Sky’s greatest satisfaction comes from hearing the finished piece and watching people play the instruments he has created and witnessing their inner response.
Nicholas Ryan Gary, Sounding Bowl Maker
Nicholas Ryan Gary’s skills in sound therapy brought him to Sounding Bowls, and thence to making. A childhood in the wilds of Maine brought him up aware that there are mysteries modern science looks past. His pursuit of answers took him through eastern philosophies, South American shamanism and the deep powers of the world of Sound. As a Sounding Bowl apprentice he has sought also into the esoteric foundations of European culture and is now equipped to understand much of the evolution of human consciousness and the crisis of the modern age. Nick sees Sounding Bowl making as a path of Love, weaving his relationship with the wood and the moment together with the perfect geometry that creates the sounds that heal. His background in timber construction gives Nick’s work a solid professionalism that comes through in the strength of sound as in their feel as reliable sound therapy tools. Nick is setting up his workshop in southern Maine in early 2017 and is available for commissions.