Christoph & Raffael Sprenger, Violin makers, Switzerland

 2017 - Celebrating 100 years     

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Fritz Sprenger  

Fritz Sprenger was born in Arbon, in the Canton of Thurgau in 1879. He had a strong interest in violin making whilst at school and at the age of 23 he began his career in earnest. By 1904 though self-taught, he had built four violins, the last of which attracted the attention of the Zurich based maker J.E. Züst. Züst was so enthusiastic about this violin that he immediately offered Fritz Sprenger a position in his shop. He worked with Züst for eight years.

In 1917 Fritz Sprenger opened his own business in St. Gallen, next to the market place. In his working life, he has built approximately 70 violins a large number of which are still played and appreciated today. He died in St. Gallen at the age of 57.
Fritz Sprenger
Arnold Sprenger

Fritz Sprenger’s son Arnold was born in St. Gallen in 1912. Arnold Sprenger enjoyed his apprenticeship in his father’s business and afterwards spent some time abroad continuing his education. In 1947 he passed his exams and became an “eidgenössisch diplomierter Geigenbaumeister” (Swiss master diploma). Then, he concentrated his work more and more on repairing and restoring.

Arnold Sprenger's expertise was invaluable in establishing the world-famous Habisreutinger Stradivari foundation. Many of the Stradivari instruments of this foundation were cherished and restored in Arnold Sprenger’s studio. He was for more than twenty years the president of the association of Swiss violin makers. Arnold Sprenger died in 1992 in St. Gallen.

Arnold Sprenger
Christoph Sprenger    

Arnold Sprenger's son Christoph was born in 1946 in St. Gallen. From 1964 until 1968 he attended the Swiss school of violin making in Brienz (Switzerland). He continued his education in various violin making studios. In 1971, he began working in his father's business. After his master examination, Christoph Sprenger specialised in the caring, repairing and restoring of valuable old instruments. In 1981, Christoph Sprenger took over the leadership of his father's studio. Even after taking over the business he remains in continuous exchange with violin restorers worldwide, keeping his professional knowledge up to date.

Thanks to the long tradition of the business and the experience that has been passed on through the generations, customers can be certain of expert appraisals, and a wide range of instruments available.

 

  Christoph Sprenger
Raffael Sprenger  

Raffael Sprenger, Christoph's son, was born in St. Gallen in 1976. After graduating from the world-famous violin making school of Cremona, he gained work experience at a workshop in the same town. 

In the world famous violin-making town, where the spirit of Stradivari, Guarneri and Amati is still felt, he built the foundations for his future career at the company of Sprenger Geigenbau.

To specialise himself on caring and restoring of stringed instruments he worked, after stays in Berne and St. Gallen, for nearly two years in a renowned atelier in London. Thereafter he worked for a well-known violin restorer in Germany. 

Since summer 2005 he works in the main shop in St. Gallen and is happy to continue the ateliers tradition. Always staying in continuous exchange with violin restorers and colleagues worldwide, keeping his professional knowledge up to date. 

Thanks to his work abroad, Raffael Sprenger has excellent business contacts with violin makers and restorers all over the world. These contacts allow the successful exchange of the latest information and are contribute to the wealth of experience existing at Switzerland 's most traditional violin atelier, Sprenger Geigenbau.

Raffael Sprenger has for many years been a board member of the Swiss Association of Violin- and Bow makers (SVGB).

   Raffael Sprenger, Photo: Susanne Keller
       

 


The technical experience that has been passed on from generation to generation, the wide selection and the love for the instrument gives you the guarantee to have confidence in our business.


Sprenger Geigenbau, Switzerland's most traditional luthier, since 1917.