These days quality bow sticks are made from wood, carbon fiber and composites, any of which are fine if it is straight and easy to control. The hair in your bow is a bit different. DO NOT buy a bow with fiberglass hair. You absolutely need horsehair. No negotiating. I have found that the student carbon fiber bows are much better for less money than the student wood bows.

violin case

Your case needs to protect your violin and bow and carry your accessories. Look for one with room inside for a shoulder rest. If the case has a zipper, make certain it also has a latch. If (I mean when) the zipper breaks you'll still be able to close it! Backpack or shoulder straps are also nice to help carry the weight and keep your hands free.

about lessons

Lessons are scheduled to meet the need of each individual.

I teach in my home studio.

Contact me for rates.

violin studio
     of jean denney

shoulder rest

A shoulder rest is an essential tool for most violinists, and unless there is a good reason not to, I require all my students to use one. A properly fitted shoulder rest will allow for good playing positions and reduce muscle fatigue.  For beginners I recommend the Kun and Everest models.


Rosin is a sticky, sappy substance we rub onto the horsehair of the bow. It is a necessary accessory because it allows the hair to grab the violin strings to make a sound. There are lots of different types, but the inexpensive varieties are perfectly sufficient for students.

music stand

A music stand is essential to be able to practice with proper posture while sitting or standing. I recommend one with a solid desk to allow you to write on your music or be sturdy enough to hold a tablet. The Manhasset is my favorite.

finding a violin to play

It is the responsibility of the student to obtain and maintain a properly set up violin. This is not difficult and it does need to be overly expensive. There are many sources for buying or renting a violin, but here are two I highly recommend:

 1. Online or on the phone, the string experts at or 1-800-248-7427
 2. Reputable luthiers in shops along the Front Range.

These guys are experts on string instruments and can tell you about their purchase and rental plans. Of course, you can always ask me my opinion on favorite models or to discuss the benefits of renting or purchasing.

I strongly caution against buying a cheap violin from online sites that don't know violins. These instruments often require more money to make them playable than you paid for the violin! Oh, and one more thing...if your great uncle's roommate's daughter's best friend found an old Stradivarius in the attic, well, probably isn't! However, old family violins can often be fixed up and played quite successfully.

music and materials

Each student is responsible for the purchase of equipment and music. I carefully consider your needs and goals and make recommendations to help get you playing the music you want to play. Most beginners will be asked to purchase my method book

Mastering the Violin: A Comprehensive Study for the Adult Learner.