Our Staff

Martin Sonnenberg - In House Restorer

We are pleased to announce that Martin Sonnenberg has joined us as the in house restorer and assistant to Sean Bishop. Martin trained at the Milan school of violin making under Luca Primon from 1990-1994 and also trained in bowmaking with Emilio Slaviero and Paul Sadka. Martin lived and worked in Cremona, Italy for the past 24 years. He has made over 50 violins, violas and cellos , including a violin for the Becket Collection of the Royal Academy of Music. Although busy with restoring instruments and bows from the collection of Bishop instruments, Martin is available for bow rehairs and instrument restoration work. Please contact him: martin@bishopstrings.com Rehairs: 07476 221658

Jutta Walcher - Bow Restorer

After my training with Matthew Coltman, I established my own business in London in 1994, making bows to commission and restoring bows. In 1997 I relocated to Oxford. It was then that I was asked to join the firm of Morris & Smith, a vibrant new firm in Waterloo. I worked there on a freelance basis for two years until the partners closed the shop to join forces with J&A Beare and Sons in London. In 1998, I entered a bow into the Manchester International Competition for cellos and cello bows, winning the bronze medal. That year I was also selected to have a bow featured in the B.V.M.A’s book ‘The British Violin’. In 1999, I was appointed - on a freelance basis - to look after the bows of the students, the professors and the collection at the Royal Academy Of Music. members of all the major British orchestras.

Michael Shakespeare - Repairer/Restorer

Michael Shakespeare studied violin making at the famous London College of Furniture. After completing his studies he was employed by one of London’s busiest violin shops and then went on to set up his own workshop in Blackheath, South London. Michael has worked on many famous Italian instruments and has been the sole repairer of Bishop Instruments & Bows. As well as repair work Michael finds time to make a few very fine copy instruments each year. Bishop Instruments are very lucky to be able to offer these for sale.

Sinead O'Carroll - Consultant, Finance, Marketing

Contact Sinead Sinead@bishopstrings.com

Jonathan Hill - Violinist- Videos

Jonathan began playing the violin aged 5 and performed J.S.Bach concertos in the Royal Festival Hall three years later. Aged 18 he began working professionally with the London Philharmonic Orchestra and by 21 had played with all the major London orchestras. At 28 he was signed to E.M.I classics as part of the Classical fusion group “The Planets” which went on to sell 500 000 albums worldwide. Jonathan has guest led many of the UK’s top orchestras and for the past 8 years can be heard as the principal violinist of the London Westend show “Les Miserable”. Like his good friend Sean, Jonathan is obsessed with violins and is working his way up the ladder to get that top Italian violin! He is playing all our violins that you can see on the videos. He is also available to help you decide what violins sound best.

Robin Michael - Cellist-Videos

Robin is a graduate of the Royal Academy of Music, London, having studied with David strange and Colin Carr. He is currently principal cellist in Orchestre Revoluonnaire et Romanque and Solo cellist with Orchestre Les Siecles (Paris). As guest principal Robin has performed with Australian Chamber Orchestra, Scottish Chamber Orchestra and English Chamber Orchestra to name but a few. For over 10 years Robin was the cellist in the Fidelio trio, performing at all the worlds most prestigious venues and festivals as well as many recordings. As a lover of instruments and bows, Robin performs on a modern cello and has a collection of new bows made by Nehr, Burke and Leahy! Robin plays all our cellos on the videos and is available to help you decide what cello sounds best!