Each rehair is a good opportunity to have your bow checked for wear a nd tear. It is really worthwhile keeping up with the maintenance of your bow. This can prevent more serious damage and keeps the value and playing qualities of your bow as high as possible.
Please make an appointment before you bring in your bow.
It is sometimes possible to collect your bow on the same day.
I charge £65 for a rehair; £75 for double bass.
People often come to me just before an important concert or a recording, when they are most critical of their own sound.
If you find that your instrument has lost resonance and doesn't respond quite how it used to it is worth having it checked. In my experience all parts of the violin, viola, cello, play a part in the optimum production of sound: having the fingerboard planed, seams glued, tailgut shortened or the bridge and sound post adjusted or replaced can free up the sound considerably and help bring out the best of your instrument.
Regular maintenance and care helps to prevent excessive wear; crucial in preserving antique instruments for generations to come.
To receive a detailed quote please make an appointment to bring your instrument into the workshop.
Estimates for repairs and restoration are free of charge and obligation.
Today historically informed performance practice is highly regarded and I am fortunate to work for many wonderful musicians who specialize in this field. Besides information gathered from archives, musea and literature, my work is informed by the feedback I receive from the players I work for.
My aim is to achieve the sound that the musician hears in their mind by providing the perfect set up for their instrument.
Converting a violin to baroque condition can be done in stages. If you are interested in experimenting with gut strings it may be enough to fit a baroque bridge and tailpiece.
If you want to take it further you can consider resetting the neck and fitting it with the characteristic wedge shaped fingerboard.
Occasionally the existing neck is too thin to be re-used and a neck graft with a new fingerboard is needed.
To complete the conversion a shorter, lighter bass bar can be fitted, a little nearer the centre than is usual nowadays for a modern violin.
Each stage of the conversion represents a different sound and it is important to be aware of those differences and how they affect, for example, projection and the ability to blend in an orchestra section.
Of course it is important that the instrument is in good condition and that any repairs needed are carried out at the same time.
For a detailed quote please make an appointment to come into the workshop.
The following prices are from my price list.
For other repairs I charge by time spent; my rate is currently £65 per hour.
In my mid teens I fell for the sound of the double bass and started to learn to play. Not long after that I walked into a violin maker's workshop and started investigating the possibilitiy of becoming a violin maker myself.
I was offered an apprenticeship with Mathijs Heyligers in Cremona, Italy, in 1986, where I was taught to make and restore violins and cellos.
I stayed for over four years, enjoying the atmosphere surrounding the International Violin Making School of Cremona and the year round music events and instrument exhibitions taking place in this historic Italian town.
I returned to my native city Amsterdam in 1990 where I worked alone making and repairing instruments. In 1997 I had the opportunity to learn more about bow making in the workshop of Matthew Coltman in West London, followed by a year work experience with Jutta Walcher in Oxord.
For a few years I took on all the bow repairs from J.P. Guivier in Central London. I also worked independently in South East London for the many musicans who live in that area.
Since June 2004 I live in Brighton, where I repair instruments and bows.
In April 2009 I took part in the violin restoration course organised by the BVMA at West Dean College. This was a brillant opportunity to gather information, exchange experiences with fellow students and receive guidance and advice from five of the finest and most experienced violin makers and restorers of today.
Happily, over the past few years the historically informed set-up has grown into an important part of my work and I'm proud to have customers in the most prestigious ensembles in the U.K and abroad.
Equally important to me are my local customers and I find it incredibly satisfying to always aim for the best results: the optimization of the quality of sound.