About Cornelia Schrijver

Corrie Schrijver, was born "Cornelia Annigje Schrijver", in Arnhem, in 1957. At the age of four, she followed in the footsteps of her grandfather and father, when she started to attend woodworking classes. After completing her havo exams in all the sciences, she studied woodworking construction and technology at a technical college before going to South Wales to learn violin making.

Cornelia graduated from the Welsh School of Violin Making, with Merit, in 1980.

The main Tutor at the 3 year course was Miranda Karol Green, who was taught at the Newark School of Violin Making by Maurice Bouette and Glen Collins. Both of whom were tutored by William Luff.

During the three year course we were taught not only violin making, violin restoration, bow rehairs and bow repairs, but we also made our own oil varnish by melting and combining resins, oils and turpentine. We were taught about felling trees and cutting and seasoning the wood. We regularly attended lectures by amongst others, Charles Beare and Carleen Hutchins. Several times a year we would go to the Phillips and Sotheby’s musical instrument sales to see and handle historic instruments by talented Luthiers such as Antonio Stradivarius, the Brothers Amati, Guarnerius etc.

We were regularly joined by a guest tutor for a term. Amongst others, Malcolm Siddal and Wilfred Saunders. Our course was well supported by the Ystrad Mynach College of Further Education, where we went for regular classes in metalwork and tool making.

In 1992, minimum class sizes of 16 were introduced by the then government. While the other violin making Schools decided to cut their workshop contact time in half, Miranda, rather than dropping her standards, decided to close the Welsh School of Violin Making. A very sad day indeed.

Since graduating, Cornelia has worked at various workshops, notably spending 17 years in the Glasgow area, making and restoring for string players in the Royal Scottish National Orchestra and the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra as well as maintaining the collection of instruments and bows belonging to the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland (formerly Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama). Many of Scotland’s traditional musicians also found their way to her workshop. Amongst them the talented pioneering tutors at the Glasgow Fiddle Workshop, and Shetland fiddler Willie Hunter who used to send his bows down to be repaired, rehaired and posted back to Lerwick Laundry.

Bow Making: After attending a lecture by Arthur Bultitude, Cornelia was inspired to learn more about bow making, and in 1988 she won an award to enable her to spend time with Brian Tunnicliffe, in order to further her skills in bow restoration and to perfect her bow making. Since then she has made both modern and baroque bows, some of which are now in the hands of prominent musicians.

In 2000 Cornelia founded "Bath Violins", which moved into a shop in Widcombe Parade, Bath.

The old shop in BathDuring this time she made instruments and bows for freelance musicians based in London and in and around Bath, as well as providing a bow rehairing and repairing service for string players as far apart as Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra, the BBC National Orchestra of Wales, and her still loyal customers from Scotland. In 2009, at the BVMA Violin Makers’ Day, a ‘Cello made by Corrie was chosen by Jonathan Rees of the Cavell Quartet on which to perform during the Lunch time recital.

In 2012 Cornelia left her shop in Bath, to join her husband Frank Lee, in Brampton, near Carlisle;

Here she continues to make instruments and bows. and now also runs Violin Making Classes in nearby Brampton Community Centre.