Meet the 2019 Sponsors

This year, these sponsors of the VMAAI have donated hundreds of dollars worth of new tools, strings, varnish products, wood, etc.
These items will be available at our auction to help support our organization’s goal of furthering violin making.


International Violin

Established in 1933, International Violin Company has been serving the stringed and fretted music industry for over 78 years. We pride ourselves on outstanding personalized customer service.  We’re happy to answer your questions and help you solve your violin/ guitar/ mandolin repair needs.







Metropolitan Music

We are a wholesale business specializing in the bowed instrument line of instruments, accessories, strings, parts, tools, tonewood, varnish and related supplies.  Metropolitan Music Company started as Czechoslovak Musical Instruments Company around 1920 and was located at 1342 Second Avenue in New York City.






In 1918, Charles D’Addario began manufacturing his strings stateside in a tiny garage shop behind the family home on 14th Street in Astoria, Queens, New York.







Violin Varnish Ltd.

Joe Robson [Violin Varnish Ltd.] makes varnishes, grounds and colors, and varnishes violins and violas in his shop in Trumansburg, New York.  He graduated Hobart College with a degree in Philosophy and Political Science.  Realizing the lack of paying jobs as a philosopher, he also learned carpentry while in college.  Joe opened a cabinet shop in 1974.  His work as a cabinetmaker led him to the study of traditional wood finishes.  In 1992 Joe and his wife, Esther, established Tried & True Wood Finishes; a line of environmentally safe linseed oil furniture finishes that grew out of this research.  They manufactured and sold these products for 22 years.  In 1996 Joe was cooking varnish for a dining room set when a violin maker stopped in his shop to see a machine he had for sale.  Smelling the varnish cooking the violin maker asked, “Why aren’t you doing this for us?”  Since then Joe has been involved in the research, history, and development of finishes for the violin.

Joe has taught the understanding and application of violin varnishes for many years.  He has taught students at the Chicago School of Violin Making and the North Bennett Street School.  He organizes and teaches, with co-teachers Marilyn Wallin and Todd Goldenberg, Artistic and Practical Violin Varnishing, an annual workshop held at the Chicago School of Violin Making. 2020 dates: April 25th – May 2nd.  He also teaches Fundamentals of Violin Oil Varnishing at Learning Trade Secrets.  2020 dates: March match 1st –  March 6th.

He is a member of the Violin Society of America and has presented numerous papers for their journal and as a speaker at the annual conventions.  Joe is also a participant at the Oberlin Makers’ Workshop.  He has presented his research to the American Federation of Violin and Bow Makers.

Joe has published several articles and editorial reviews for the Strad Magazine including the current “Scarlet Fever”: the research and development of the Stradivari Cochineal Varnish.


Team Epic

We took a trip with Simeon Chambers into the woods ,,,
cut some spruce, and have donated two large pieces for cellos to the auction at VMAAI.

Evan, Hal, Iron Mike, Alex, Dirk

Evan, Elias, Dirk, Iron Mike, Simeon, Alex, Hal

Elias, Evan, Simeon, Hal, Iron Mike, Alex, Dirk

Simeon with “bear claw” tree.

Iron Mike “jones’n” over some nice wood!