Some testimonials by players are poignant.... it is incredible how players suffer to find a good viola.
SSuepmtemcarbedr o26 at 3s:ft4t7 iPhddMd ·
As some of you may know, I’ve struggled with not having my own professional viola for several years due to the financial burden of buying a high quality instrument along with finding one that fits my large stature without being overly strenuous to play. I’ve lost many nights sleep worrying about how I would navigate the professional music world without having my own instrument. I was fortunate enough to be loaned instruments from the University of Illinois for 4 years of undergrad, by a fantastic local Cincinnati maker Damon Gray, my teacher, and other members of my studio throughout my Master’s at CCM.
There have been several transitional periods in which I would have to give back instruments, scramble to find another, and try to figure out how to play a completely different viola usually a few days before an important audition or competition. This led me to often injure my wrist, lose motivation, and even depression from feeling that I didn’t have my own personal voice and tone that I wanted to present to audiences.
This summer, I was presented an opportunity by a very close friend to look at violas in Los Angeles, California. I was recommended Benning Violins by an incredible violist and old friend, Johanna Nowik . I tried 30+ violas from different shops that day, but immediately fell in love with this viola by an extraordinarily talented Brazilian viola maker, Luis Claudio Manfio. This 16.3” viola named “Allemande” has a rich and powerful tone, is the most comfortable viola I’ve ever played on, and is absolutely gorgeous! I can't describe how much I love this viola and how grateful I am to officially own a Manfio Viola! Cheers to a lifelong companion!"