At Moreland Violin Shop, Mark has chosen to revisit the traditions of many great shops in Europe and Great Britain. A number of shops in Europe choose to offer bows and instruments that were labeled as workshop instruments which were clearly not the work of the shop owner or master.
These products were made by sub contractors outside of the shop and sometimes made by shop employees. They were almost always labeled with fictitious names for marketing purposes. In no way did this diminish the value of these bows and instruments but served as a means to provide very good dependable inventory. It also provided a means of employment for makers working on there own and a way to get there products to the playing community.
Today many very fine instruments exist as a result of this business practice. The Hills in London purchased many great white and varnished instruments from French makers in Mirecourt and Paris and labeled them Hill workshop. They also had many great bow makers in there employ. These bows and instruments were stamped, branded and labeled Hill & Sons but were clearly not the work of individuals in the Hill family.
Likewise, the same practice was evident in shops in France, Germany, Switzerland and sometimes Italy. Today these instruments are sold as workshop instruments and in many cases are identified by the original maker in certificates and sales documents.
Mark is creating several instruments of this sort which are available from the shop from time to time. These instruments stand alone on their own merit and provide an outstanding instrument for the price.
At this time the labeling of these instruments reflect English names given as a result of Mark Moreland’s family connections to the British Isles and family ancestry. The Robert Thomas line is the premier line which is built with the very finest woods and materials from China and Europe.
Mark tonally adjusts instruments on the inside and then the shop varnishes with degrees of antiquing to create a masterfully looking older instrument that not only sounds like an older instrument but plays easily and responsively.
The Robert Thomas line of instruments is an inspiration of the original Mark Moreland Atelier instruments first introduced while Mark worked as Work Shop Manager and quality control at Eastman Strings outside of Washington D.C. This Mark Moreland Atelier line has been written up in Strings Magazine with glowing praise as a best value in comparison market research in the past.
The Mark Moreland Atelier line of instruments is no longer available. A less expensive workshop line of instruments is marketed under the names of Robert A. Corsby and Ian L. Martin. Both lines are tonally adjusted by Mark and offer a superior sound and response to other instruments available in the market place. We feel that teachers and musicians will be very impressed with these instrument offerings and encourage the public and shops to try these instruments for themselves.
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