Festival of Modern Making - Buying Contemporary

Why buy contemporary

Why buy a contemporary instrument?

There are lots of reasons why a violin, viola or cello by a contemporary maker might be the right instrument for you. With so many talented luthiers making today, if you’re looking for a new instrument then you’d do well to try a few new ones during the search process!

Firstly, one of the most common reasons that our clients choose a contemporary instrument is that it happens to be the instruments they fall in love with! When you find the right instrument, you’ll know… Read on to find out why buying that new violin with a great sound could be the right decision for you.

At certain price levels, new instruments can be a fantastic way to get the best sound possible for your money. The instruments in this exhibition start at £3,500 and rise to £14,000: we are delighted that these instruments more than hold their own against similarly-priced antique instruments. There is no set sound for contemporary instruments and we’re certain that these smash the preconception that new instruments sound ‘new’: please do listen to some of our videos to hear the variety of different tonal characteristics within the collection. We’re also able to provide sound recordings of individual instruments: just get in touch if this would be of interest.

Another excellent reason to consider a new instrument is the fact that you will be the first person to play it for any length of time. Whether or not you believe that this will lead the instrument to take on some of the qualities of your own playing, it certainly guarantees that the instrument will be in original mint condition! These instruments tend to be less susceptible to changes in environment that their older counterparts. This stability makes a contemporary instrument a great choice for travelling or indeed for playing in lots of different environments without worrying too much about the impact on the violin, viola or cello.

Finally, there is the potential to invest in a maker whose value will rise over time. Instruments made in Italy between around 1900 and 1960 are a great example of this: referred to as the ‘Modern Italian’ school, these instruments have risen exponentially in value over the course of their lives. This was due in large part to a rebirth of the traditional skill of luthiery in that country: a similar renaissance has been seen in the UK over the last few decades, largely thanks to the Newark School of Violin Making and other such centres of expertise and skill. Of course, we can’t guarantee that your next instrument will be as obliging as to become the next ‘Modern British’ name, however if you choose an instrument that you love then we believe you can’t go wrong!

Take a look around our Festival of Modern Making pages to find out more about the brilliant makers whom we represent, and the instruments which are available for sale. Don’t forget, you are very welcome to see all of the instruments in person or over video chat!