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Thursday, May 2, 2013

Violin 101: Obtaining an Instrument

An inevitable issue for new violin students is how to obtain an instrument.  This issue comes up so often that I would like to comment on it here.

One thing I do NOT recommend is going out and buying a violin before you or your child begin lessons. It is easy to overpay, as you strive to get a quality instrument.  And if you try to avoid paying too much, it is unfortunately even easier to end up with an instrument of very poor quality, so it starts impeding your child's progress within a couple of month of lessons, or it is altogether unusable from the start.  This happened last week to a new student of mine, whose parents found a violin for him on eBay before coming to me. It saddened me to see them in this situation.

Unless you are lucky to inherit a violin from a musician friend or relative, it's better to rent at first.  Rental violins are usually of good quality for beginners, and they can be exchanged if there are problems. Then after several months of lessons, I will help my students find an affordable violin of their own, that is the best fit for them.