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For me the 2021 year was a time of transition, growth, fresh energy, and new directions. After 14 years working for Guy Harrison in Ottawa, I moved to Boston in April to start working as a full time restorer for Reuning & Son Violins. It’s an honor to be part of such a fantastic and knowledgeable team, and I am excited to be working on many fine instruments at the.. Read More
Last November, I was pleased to finish a cello in time to participate in the 23rd International Violin making competition held by the Violin Society of America (VSA) in Cleveland. Among the 68 cellos presented, my instrument was awarded a Double Certificate of Merit : -a Certificate of Merit for Tone by judges and cellists Dane Johansen, Jeffrey Solow and Brian Thornton. -a Certificate of Merit for Workmanship by judges.. Read More
2018 has ended and it has been quite a busy one! Among other things, I’ve been taking part in the 3D StringTheory Project presented by the Ottawa Symphony Orchestra last November. This multidisciplinary project involved the conception and production of a 3D printed ‘’da braccio’’ octet as well as the composition of a musical piece for the resulting instruments. With the help of digital designer Laurent Lacombe (Co-founder of Creadditive,.. Read More
Last Saturday I was honoured to be part of the Maker’s Forum exhibition in Toronto. Contemporary violin makers and bow makers from Canada (34 on 37 participants) and abroad were presenting their work. As a maker, this event was a great way to meet with musicians. I was able to discuss the instruments I had brought (a cello and a violin) and get their feedback. During the afternoon, Kerson Leong performed.. Read More
I am pleased to announce that a viola I made will be displayed this week end in the Contemporary violin maker’s exhibition presented by Reed Yeboah Fine Violins LLC. Please come visit us at The Kosciuszko Foundation, 15 E 65th St, New York. or follow this link for more information.
I wanted to extend my warmest thanks and share with you some highlights from my experience gained through the Chalmers Professional Development Grant, which was granted to me by the Ontario Arts Council in 2015. The grant allowed me to attend this year’s violin making workshop in Oberlin, Ohio for two weeks. There, while working on a violin, I was able to attend great lectures given by colleagues coming from.. Read More
“Very nice cello, with a handsome varnish. The sound is well balanced with a deep and strong C string, which can be difficult to find in a cello. I also like the width and projection of the A string sound.” Paul Marleyn, Professor of Cello at the University of Ottawa www.paulmarleyn.com A musical instrument such as a violin, viola or cello is the result of an accumulation of decisions from.. Read More
The use of shark skin was introduced to me several years ago during an internship in England. The skin of sharks has an abrasive property which once dry can be used like sandpaper on wood. Nonetheless, I find that a small piece of shark skin tends to last longer than sand paper. In the “Sacconi book”, there is a hand drawing of enlarged dermal denticles from a dogfish (Fig.29 p33). I.. Read More
The warm season is the ideal time to prepare varnish as it is better to be outdoors to cook the ingredients. I wouldn’t recommend that anyone experiment in their kitchen as there are too many ways it could go wrong, starting with strong and persistent resin and linseed oil smells in the best case scenario. The varnish I use for my instruments is a mixture of drying oil, cooked rosin.. Read More
Cellos or Violas made with poplar or willow backs have a reputation for having a warm sound. These wood species were used throughout the history of violin making, and particularly in Cremona during the second half of the XVII century and the first half of the XVIII century. In his book, “The Secrets of Stradivari,” Simone F. Sacconi mentions that two fifths of Stradivari’s cellos still remaining, feature poplar or.. Read More