Curiosity Questions About the Viola D’amore

January 30, 2019, 5:54 PM · Hi everyone,
I'm really curious about a few things related to the viola d'amore. I've researched this and can't find a clear answer:
1. How long is a viola d'amore's body?
2. Are violin and/or viola chin and shoulder rests compatible with a viola d'amore? If not, what do players use instead?
3. What is the string length of a viola d'amore? Is it the same as a violin or longer? I found two contradictory sources about this.
4. What sort of bow is used? A violin bow or a viola bow?
Thanks in advance.

Replies (1)

January 30, 2019, 8:28 PM · 1. They vary. No real standard. I have a Martin Biller in the shop at present that is 395mm, and I have seen them much larger.I know a Biller that is 440mm!
2-Sometimes yes, sometimes no. If they have overhung edges like a violin then yes, although some are very deep and there really isn't room for a chinrest! The ones with a gamba edge-no overhang-are a pill to get anything to stay on.The Biller that has the 395 mm body is so deep that you can barely fit your chin into a chinrest, the one that is 440mm is much more shallow and has a chinrest and a custom shoulder rest to fit the width. Much too wide for any production SR.
3-Once again, quite variable. The Biller has a string length of 380mm. I have a old French 'amore that I am restoring that has the same sized body as the Biller but a string length of 340 mm.
4. Violin, Viola, Baroque.

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