Sean Bishop Is Awarded ‘Associate Of The Royal Academy Of Music’ Title At The Royal Academy Of Music

“I was extremely honoured and privileged this week to have been awarded the Associate of the Royal Academy of Music (ARAM) title for my services to music as an instrument dealer. I studied viola at the Royal Academy of Music in London for a year in 1992 doing post graduate studies.
Of course it was obvious I would end up a violin dealer having sold the famous Prof. Erich Grunberg a violin bow in my first week.
I spent much of my free time (when not practising !) in the Luthier’s workshop – thanks David Rattray! – , whose wife would then become my shop PA in 2008 for 6 or so years!
I’m seen here with my wife, Sinead, whom I met in this very hall and our youngest of 4 children, Pierce.
It was a great event.”


New Italian violas and bows in London

Over the last 12 years of having a central London shop, I have done a number of exhibitions with the Italian makers of Cremona, known as “Consorzio Stradivari”. Within this group are around 75 makers living and working in and around the birthplace of the great Antonio Stradivari. Usually we had 20 violas, 20 violins and 10 cellos….but this year I decided it would be a viola only affair! I also decided to invite 20 Italian makers I knew to also join in and make me an instrument. And so on the 1st November we had 45 brand new Italian viola in the shop!

Along side this I also have contact with most of the World’s finest bow makers so we had 30 bow makers involved, with 40 bows on show!

After a fun opening night party, with the great violist Maxim Rysanov playing a number of the violas, we settled into 3 weeks of violists trying violas and bows. The exhibition was a great success with many violas & bows sold….I also purchased 10 violas for the shop and bought all the bows that I didn’t already own myself. So now I have without doubt the largest range of violas and bows in Europe. That’s what happens when a violist becomes a dealer!

New Brochure 2016/17 now available to download

New Brochure 2016/17 now available to download

2nd International Masterclass held at Bishop Strings

On Sunday the 5th October saw the second International Masterclass to be held at Bishop instruments & bows.

After fun times with the previous masterclass hosted by Maxim Rysanov ,this time it was the talented British violinist Daniel Hope. 3 junior students from the Royal Academy of Music, the Guildhall School and Royal College of Music performed pieces by Tchaikovsky and Ysaye. Daniel himself played some solo violin works to begin with and it was easy to see how he has become one of the World’s finest musicians. All 3 students benefited from his sound advice and the 45 (packed!!!) members of the audience also enjoyed the event.

Next March we continue with the Violist Roger Benedict.

The Marylebone Journal, October 2013

Stringed instrument dealer Sean Bishop talks to Viel Richardson about craftsmanship, history and why bow making is experiencing a golden age

Cremona in London – 2013

We are happy to announce “Cremona in London” is happening again!! The best place to buy a new instrument…and an Italian one at that!

From 7th November to 7th December 2013, the ‘Antonio Stradivari’ Consortium of Violin makers Cremona, visits the UK for the third time.  From the capital of violin making, the consortium represents 75 living master violin makers.

Following the successful 2011 and 2012 exhibitions, comes another opportunity to experience the highest standards in stringed unstrument craftmanship.  The exhibition features over 30 new violins, 20 violas and 10 cellos, all certified by the CREMONA LIUTERIA trademark which represents 500 years of tradition.

Visit the exhibtion, view and play the violins, violas and cellos, all are available for purchase.

New Brochure for 2013/14

Well it’s finally done! Bishop Instruments & Bows brochure 2013/14.  Lots of pictures of instruments, bows, the shop and, um, Me!! 24 pages!  If you would like a copy please sign up to our mailing list and we will send one.  Alternatively it is also available to download by clicking here. Hope you enjoy it!

Just in this week

Well its been a busy week after having spent most of August in South of France on holidays with the family so now its back to work! First up was getting this very fine example of JB Vuillaume’s best work. A fine Del Gesu copy made in 1862. I have been lucky to sell quite a few JBV”s in the last few years and this is a beauty!

Behind in the background is a Ferdinando Garimberti of 1924. He was one of the greatest 20th Century makers and also helped found the Cremona school of Violin making.

Cremona – Violin Making Exhibition in London

From the world capital of violin making, the Consortium of Violin makers “Antonio Stradivari” Cremona, which represents 72 living contemporary master violin makers,  visits the UK for the first time. An opportunity open to all to experience the highest standards in stringed instrument craftsmanship representing 500 years of tradition and certified by the CREMONA LIUTERIA® trademark.

Visit the Exhibition at Bishops

Visit the exhibition, view and play the violins, violas and cellos, they are all available for purchase.
2 Hinde Steet, London W1U 2AZ

+44 (0)207 4875682
Open Mon to Sat 10-5pm, Tues & Thurs until 8pm

Cremona 2012

We are pleased to announce that in March 2012 we will have our second exhibition from the violin makers consortium “Antonio Stradivari”. This years exhibition was a great success with many instruments sold and of course whom could forget the opening night with Proseco and Italian nibbles. So if you are keen on new makers then come along in March.