Ernst Heinrich Roth inherited a violin making business in Markneukirchen, Germany ( where the Moennig family emigrated from in late 1800’s)…. and he turned it into the premier larger shop in Germany between the wars….. and his instruments were in demand all over Europe ..and eventually the world. One of his most famous instruments is a beautiful Bass made in the 1920’s that was the partner of Jazz great- Charlie Mingus all his playing life.
Like all big shops, instruments were made in many different levels to suit many different levels of players. The craftsmanship, wood selection, varnish etc …are the ways that this is evident.The Viola pictured here is a small gem…at 15 1/8″. It bears the original label dated 1922 ..and it has the original oval brand at the center of the back – The Viola wa made in the finest era of the Roth shop ..1920’s to mid 1930’s. Sadly with the coming to power of the Reich and the catastrophic World War that followed ..the Roth instruments – and German instruments in general never reclaimed this level of craft and beauty.
I have worked on this instrument thoroughly inside and out to give it all the power and depth that a Viola, this comfortable to play, can have….and I’m proud to offer it for sale.