Small Violas

Bohemian Small Viola, circa 1900


Czech viola probably by a member of the Prokop familyProbably by a member of the Prokop family, this is a late 19th century Czech viola made on a Maggini model. It’s in great condition apart form a few dents and scuffs to the varnish. A very handy size, it has a dark and fruity sound, slightly melancholic, very musical. More details

Mittenwald Small Viola, circa 1850


Mittenwald Viola, circa 1850An unusually attractive Mittenwald viola in near perfect condition. One piece front and back, no cracks or damages, the original varnish very well preserved though with heavy craquelure to the scroll. The tone is big, bright and smooth with great response – recently set up to a high standard by Stringers of London. More details

Bohemian Small Viola, circa 1830

Recently sold

Bohemian Small Viola circa 1830This is a very attractive early 19th century viola bearing an apocryphal Gagliano label. In style of construction it comes closest to Prague instruments of the period, but it seems destined to remain forever “anonymous”. The size is typical of Austro-Hungarian work – overall the workmanship is excellent, as are the materials and the varnish. There are a couple of invisible and highly professional crack repairs to the table, including a soundpost patch. More details

Mittenwald Small Viola circa 1830


Mittenwald Small ViolaA fine sounding small viola from the early 19th century in spectacular condition. More details

Mittenwald Small Viola, circa 1870


Mittenwald small viola, circa 1870This is a very well made Mittenwald small viola from the mid-late 19th century – typically the front, back and ribs are all one-piece in construction. The tidy inner work reveals the use of an inside mould, and in all respects this is a finely executed instrument with dramatic varnish, elegant Guarneri-inspired f-holes, and discreet antiquing. More details

Nicolas Augustin Chappuy Small Viola circa 1770


Nicolas Augustin Chappuy Small ViolaThis is a fine 18th century French viola of the “Vieux Paris” school. It has a very credible Guersan label but in fact it’s the work of Nicolas Chappuy showing many of his trademark touches. More details

Betts Workshop Small Viola, circa 1803

Recently sold

Small Betts violaSince we started specialising in small violas, we’ve been consistently surprised by the quality of London instruments, particularly Betts and Forster. Here’s another example, a lovely Betts Shop viola with a big and beautiful sound. More details

Caspar Strnad Viola, Prague 1819


Caspar Strnad ViolaI have to admit to being completely obsessed by the Prague School, and in particular the instruments of Caspar Strnad and his contemporaries or co-workers. Consistently adventurous in model, with exquisite workmanship and great tone, these instruments are generally rather better than Italian violins of the period. More details

Paolo Castello Small Viola, Genoa circa 1770

Price on application

A Small Viola by Paolo Castello, Genoa circa 1770This is an outstanding 18th century Italian viola by Paolo Castello. Castello attracts quite a varied response from connoisseurs and antiquarians, mainly on account of his idiosyncratic scrolls, but I’m a big fan. Every instrument of his that I’ve played has sounded good, and most are outstanding. This viola is a fine example of his work, very similar to the one featured in Alberto Giordano’s seminal article in the Strad. More details

Choosing a viola? We specialise in small violas…

Although most of our prejudices about instruments filter down from the current orchestral fashions, there are many situations in which a large soundbox is of no particular benefit, and where a big viola just proves unwieldy. Klezmer, traditional and gypsy musicians tend to favour small instruments, as do classical musicians who are answerable only to themselves! More details

Scotland, London and Online

Tonal specialist • Worldwide service • Trial periods