For any musician there are a few must-see places on your list that have inspired you or began the history of the instrument you love. If you are a fan of the violin, you’re in luck. Here is a must-see list of places you should visit if you are a violinist.
The first must be where it all started, and for that you will need to take the trek over to Cremona, Italy which is also said to be appropriately called, Violin City. This city is the most famous in the world for producing their stringed masterpieces. In 1566 Andrea Amati invented the prototype and from there it was history. The demand for this new musical instrument went soaring and eventually Andrea’s grandson took over and started producing the world best violins in history.
Fighting for the title of “Violin capital of the world,” is Montpellier, VT, USA. Many luthiers have setup shop in this city and have been crafting these stringed instruments for distribution worldwide. Dating back to 1768, a luthier from Italy came here and started producing and repairing violins. As the city grew, so did the popularity of the musical instrument, and today some of the most unique and handcrafted piece come from here.
Hopping back over to Europe, there is evidence that suggests that the true inventors of the violin, while in Italy, were actually Germans! So that’s why the small town of Fussen, Germany is seen as the birthplace of violin making. Here they are famed for making these stringed instruments to order and designing them for the particular player in mind.
In the UK you can find the Messiah. No, not him, the violin known as the Messiah. Kept in the Museum of Art and Archaeology at Oxford this violin is the most famous of them all. Tarisio was the original owner and it was passed down and eventually gave as a gift to the museum by Alfred and Arthur Hill.
Lastly, if you’re in the market for a new violin and only want the best, visit Bein and Fushi in Chicago. This custom maker and rare dealer of world-class violins is in possession of some of the worlds most expensive violins, one of them being 18 million USD! On second though, perhaps you can just window shop.
Despite where the violin actually started, you will be sure to find something in any of these violin cities of the world. Whether its a new violin or just a better understanding and appreciation of the instrument, be sure to checkout at least one of these famous violin cities.