CS9/ 44 English 17 1/8″ viola by William Piper. Brescian model. Circa 1982. Sound sample.


Preowned English 17 1/8″ viola by William Piper. Brescian model. Labelled ‘Camille Violins William Piper Anno 1982 No 93 Birmingham’. With Dominant strings. Length of back: 43.6 cms .Comes with original maker’s certificate of authenticity, with photos.

Fine making by one hand.

Professional player comment: ‘ Wonderful to play. Immediately responsive. Beautiful deep open tone. Vibrant and resonant. ‘



One-piece, birdseye maple back. Wide-grain front. Golden-brown varnish. Handmade boxwood fittings. String length: 38.7 cms.

William Piper was born in 1948 in  West Bromwich, West Midlands. He started playing the violin aged nine and right from that early time wanted to be a violin maker. In 1964, he left school, aged 16 years old, and was apprenticed to Sydney Evans violin shop in Birmingham staying there for 12 years mainly as a repairer, but was taught violin making by David Evans. He made and sold his first violin when 18 in 1967.

He left Sydney Evans in 1977 and worked with the Musical Instrument Repair Company in Halesowen, West Midlands for 2 years then joined Thomas Smith Violins, the oldest established violin shop in Birmingham where he remained for 5 years as a maker and training other repairers.

From 1979 to 1992 he taught violin making at Colton Hills College in Wolverhampton teaching over 100 people.

In 1992, he moved to Droitwich, also in the West Midlands  and was invited to set up his workshop at the nearby Jinney Ring Craft Centre where he remained for 29 years. He is now semi-retired.

He estimates he has probably making and overseeing the making of 700 instruments, but not all will be accredited to him. 

< =