Workshop Information

Join Us for Our 10th Anniversary Summer!

We are celebrating the 10th anniversary of the Southern California Violin Makers Workshop in summer 2015! As part of our celebration, workshop organizer Jim Brown is sponsoring a special Salastina Music Society concert on Saturday, June 6th at 3:00 p.m. on the Pomona College campus, featuring Brahms' String Sextet No. 2 in G Major, Opus 36. Additionally, during the three weeks of the workshop there will be wine and cheese events and other surprises to help mark the occasion.

Violin Making with Michael Darnton

2015 Dates

  1. Session 1: Monday through Friday, June 1-5
  2. Session 2: Monday through Friday, June 8-12
  3. Session 3: Monday through Friday, June 15-19

Students may register for one, two, or all three sessions. Beginners must get clearance from the workshop organizer in order to attend.

Daily Schedule

Workshop hours are 8:00 am to 5:00 pm with a lunch break at noon. The facilities are open in the evenings and on weekends for participants who wish to continue working on their own.

Format

Each day features an informal lecture by instructor Michael Darnton. During the rest of the day, he circulates among all participants as they work on their own instruments to provide guidance, answer questions, demonstrate techniques, and troubleshoot. All are welcome to listen in as he discusses a particular aspect of violin making a student needs assistance with. Each week, every participant receives a 30-minute individual session with Mr. Darnton to discuss any violin making topic of his or her choice. This flexible structure allows participants to work independently at their own pace and serves them equally well whether they are beginners, intermediate, or advanced.

Major stages of violin making addressed during the workshops include:

  1. Outline and purfling, rough arching
  2. Final arching, graduation, f-holes, bass bar
  3. Carving the neck and scroll, setting the neck, and setup

Other topics addressed include tool making, sharpening, and use; choosing a model and designing the templates and forms; aesthetic considerations of the outline and corners, purfling, f-holes and scrolls; and tonal effects of arching, graduation and setup.

Note that participants are welcome to come with work at any stage of completion.

Bow Making with George Rubino

Jim Brown, SCVMW organizer, has announced an exciting addition to the summer 2015 bow making program. Instructor George Rubino is adding a second track during both weeks: basic bow repair and bow rehairing for any skill level including beginners. Students signing up for this track should contact Mr. Rubino to find out what tools and supplies to bring. For students with some bow making experience, Mr. Rubino will provide his usual course of instruction focusing on frog and button making and will teach the most common frog and button repairs. Advanced students may study frog/button restoration techniques with approval of the instructor. Both tracks will run concurrently during both Session 1 and Session 2.

Noted bow makers, teachers, and colleagues Lynn Armour Hannings and George Rubino Alternate summers at SCVMW. Next summer, Lynn Armour Hannings will return and will focus on the stick and on repairs required for bowmaking (rehair, windings, weights and balances).

2015 Dates

  • Session 1: Monday through Friday, June 8-12
  • Session 2: Monday through Friday, June 15-19

Students may register for one or both sessions and should specify whether they are interested in the basic or regular track. New students are encouraged to sign up for both sessions.

Daily Schedule

Workshop hours are 8:00 am to 5:00 pm with a lunch break at noon. The facilities are open in the evenings and on weekends for participants who wish to continue working on their own.

Format

In this hands-on workshop, participants learn about the entire process of bow making. The workshop covers design, weight/balance, materials, tips, tool usage, finishing, and more.

Workshop Photos

View a slideshow of photos from the workshop!

  • Talking about templates
  • Hard at work
  • What is it?
  • Varnishing a violin
  • Cambering a bow
  • Making a bow
  • Carving a bow head
  • Comparing Stradivari arches
  • Examining a fine Italian violin
  • Consultation
  • Saturday lecture
  • Carving a scroll
  • Placing the f-holes
  • Graduating the top
  • Jammin’
  • Executive Chef Stein with appreciative fans