I make several violin types, modeled on the old masters Stradivari, Guarneri and Matteo Gofriller. Lately I added an Amati model, very sweet and warm. My violas too come each slightly different in sound they produce. Some are made with maple, some with American Magnolia backs harvested from a 200 year old tree from Rhinebeck, NY that toppled in a storm.
The workshop is located in Red Hook, midway up the Hudson Valley in Upstate New York. I always have instruments for you to try out. I can build a violin or a viola to your specifications as well.
I learned violin making and repair in a luthier school in Cheb, Czech Republic, with a tradition of instrument building that goes back to the 17th century. To me, violin making is a kind of alchemy. The ingredients, like the spruce in the soundboard, the maple in the back and the neck, the strings, varnish, the dimensions, weight and plate graduations must all come together. If they do, it is a joy to hear the sweet and powerful music spring from this very small instrument. I am lucky to have the wonderful Bard College Conservatory nearby and can hear my instruments played by the talented students in their concerts.
Vintage instruments, which I repair, offer a different kind of challenge. Their wood has aged and has a potential to really sing. I can cut and adjust the bridge, the sound post, and make many other little tweaks to accomplish this. I also rehair bows
and do seasonal adjustments and maintenance to keep your instrument in a top form.
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