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The New Violin Family

The Hutchins Consort plays on the eight scaled violins of the violin octet designed and built by famed luthier Dr. Carleen Hutchins. The instruments are the first successful attempt to create an acoustically balanced set of instruments that can sound truly like violins across the entire range of written music. With instruments ranging from the tiny treble violin, tuned one octave above the standard violin, to the gigantic large bass violin, tuned one octave lower than a 'cello, the Hutchins Consort produces an astonishing palette of sounds.

The Artists

The Hutchins Consort is a collective of some of the country’s finest string players. Each program features an ensemble of eight members, chosen for their expertise in the diverse abilities represented in each program.

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The Instruments

The Hutchins violins were created during Carleen Hutchins’ many decades of research into the physics of traditional string instruments. Dr. Hutchins’ research into the acoustic properties of string instruments resulted in an innovative process called free-plate tuning; a precise method of refining the top and back plates of a violin before it is assembled to bring it to peak acoustic performance.


The fruits of her labor are the eight Hutchins violins, ranging in size from the 18.5-inch treble to the 7.2-foot contrabass. During her lifetime, Dr. Hutchins built approximately 300 instruments, around 100 of which are the scaled violins, making the Hutchins violin octet instruments among the rarest instruments in the world.