Peter Horn Master Violin Maker and Restorer - Greater Cleveland Ohio

Real Estate Broker/Owner with Olsen Ziegler Realty

Peter Horn Master Violin Maker and Restorer of Stringed Instruments - Greater Cleveland Ohio

Peter Horn Violin Maker and Restorer Cleveland Ohio

Greater Cleveland, Ohio is home to one of the most experienced (56+ years) master violin (and all stringed instruments) maker, repair and restoration specialists in the country.  Peter Horn is a master violin maker, repairer and restorer.

Peter Horn Violin Maker and Restorer Cleveland Ohio

I had the opportunity recently to visit Peter in his shop in at 10269 Barr Road in Brecksville, Ohio 44141.  My daughter's viola bow had a serious stress fracture so I took it to Peter to evaluate.  Peter explained that the crack was running with the grain and could be easily repaired.  Peter also explained that if the crack was going across the grain, the repair would have been more involved.


Peter Horn Violin Maker and Restorer Cleveland Ohio

I sat and visited with Peter, swapping stories about our kids, the local music program, life in general, but mostly about Peter's history as a violin maker and restorer.  These are the kind of stories and people you only meet once in a blue moon, as Peter graduated from the famous Mittenwald Violinmakers School In Germany back in 1955.


Peter Horn Violin Maker and Restorer Cleveland Ohio

Peter described to me some of the "art" that goes into making a violin (or any stringed instrument).  How a violin maker cannot just use a template and go just by the book when making a stringed instrument.  A violin maker must be able to really see, visually, aesthetically and be able to produce not only a top quality violin, but one that is very pleasing to the eye.


Peter Horn Violin Maker and Restorer Cleveland Ohio

As an example, Peter told me about the violin he had to make and be judged by the top 5-6 violin makers around Germany in order to graduate from the Mittenwald Violinmakers School.  See the last photo below for the violin he made.  Peter's grade was an A.  Peter described how there was one minor, cosmetic defect that kept him from getting an A+.  Peter showed me how the scroll/curve on the neck on one side was perfectly round and pleasing to the eye, whereas on the other side, there was a small section that was not completely round.  While I never would have seen that minor blemish, it goes without saying that the art and science of violin making has been passed down through the generations, and it's quite a treat to have one of the best violin makers and restorers right here in Greater Cleveland.

Peter Horn Violin Maker and Restorer Cleveland Ohio

Peter Horn Violin Maker and Restorer Cleveland Ohio

Peter Horn Violin Maker and Restorer Cleveland Ohio

Peter Horn Violin Maker and Restorer Cleveland Ohio

Peter Horn can be reached in his studio at 216.526.2606 or via e-mail at

I hope you enjoy the photos of my recent visit.  Feel free to stop in and say hi to Peter and chat about all things stringed!

Peter Horn's Violin Made as a student at the famous Mittenwald Violinmakers School


Re-Blogged 1 time:

Re-Blogged By Re-Blogged At
  1. Pat Haddad, ABR, CRS, ePRO, GRI 12/03/2010 06:20 PM
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Ohio Cuyahoga County Brecksville
Cuyahoga County Ohio Real Estate
Cleveland Ohio Real Estate
peter horn violin maker restorer
cleveland ohio violin repair

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Bill Gassett
RE/MAX Executive Realty - Hopkinton, MA
Metrowest Massachusetts Real Estate

Very cool Chris! I love all the great photos. It is obvious that Peter has fine tuned his craft.

Nov 23, 2010 11:18 PM #5
Renée Donohue~Home Photography
Savvy Home Pix - Allegan, MI
Western Michigan Real Estate Photographer

What an occupation!  I bet he has people shipping their instruments from around the world to him.  I played the violin for about 6 years from elementary school through high school!

Nov 25, 2010 03:07 AM #6
Not a real person
San Diego, CA

With just 36 days left in 2010, Zoey the Cool Cat and I just wanted to stop by and wish you a very Happy Thanksgiving. Hope it’s a great one, with lots of fun and food with family and friends!

Happy Thanksgiving!

Nov 25, 2010 03:48 AM #7
Chris Olsen
Olsen Ziegler Realty - Cleveland, OH
Broker Owner Cleveland Ohio Real Estate

Hi Bill -- Yes he has, he is quite a find.

Hi Renee -- I didn't ask him that question, but I would assume shipping isn't a problem given the prevalence of it today.

Hi Russel - Thanks and I hope your Thanksgiving was fun.  I love that photo.  I hope Zoe catches many things to play with! :)


Nov 26, 2010 09:05 AM #8
Karen Kruschka
RE/MAX Executives - Woodbridge, VA
- "My Experience Isn't Expensive - It's PRICELESS"

Chris  That is one of the lovliest posts I have read in a long time - thank you.  You struck gold when you took your daughter's viola bow to him - I'm suggesting one very worthy hyper - local business post

Nov 28, 2010 03:26 AM #9
Barb & Sal Dragotta
Macomb, MI
Macomb County Michigan see his eyes so deep & beautiful; tools so carefully hung in their own places; his hands that may be care-worn, but so strong I can fully understand what it must have been to be in the presence of this Master.

The instruments shown and the one that he made are gorgeous looking; can only imagine what sounds they sing & the stories they tell.  So glad that you took the time to comment on a post of ours--this way besides the comment I was able to discover the great person you presented.  thanks so much for both.

Barb & Sal  

Nov 28, 2010 12:26 PM #10
Diane Rice
Rice Prprty Mgmnt & Rlty, LLC, South Holland, IL - Lansing, IL

I enjoyed reading this so much.  This detailed tribute is an eye-opener to perhaps those in the neighborhood who may have never noticed.  I'm impressed, and appreciate along with the others, such value you placed in it for us to enjoy.  Thank you!

Nov 28, 2010 05:56 PM #11
Melissa Zavala
Broadpoint Properties - Escondido, CA
Broker, Escondido Real Estate, San Diego County

Now this is a really interesting Localism post. WHat an amazing craft. Today I am going to begin my own 30-day Localism challenge. None will probably be as well-written as yours, but it's worth a shot.

Nov 29, 2010 09:27 AM #12
Celeste "SALLY" Cheeseman
Liberty Homes - Mililani, HI

I'm so glad I stopped by here this evening Chris...I so enjoyed this post and it showed your interest to bring this local area business and history to share with us. Interesting man and valued for his skills for sure!

Dec 01, 2010 04:48 PM #13
Debe Maxwell, CRS | The Maxwell House Group | RE/MAX Executive | (704) 491-3310 - Charlotte, NC
Charlotte Homes for Sale - Charlotte Neighborhoods

I'm with Karen--Make sure this is a localism post so they can feature it locally.  What a wonderful happenstance story and I just love the history.  Chris, you're such a wonderful writer.  I'm sure Peter would love to have a printed copy of this post mailed to him to keep in his scrapbook.  He just seems like someone who would appreciate that.

Enjoy your weekend...

Dec 03, 2010 07:09 AM #14
Laurie Mindnich
Centennial, CO

Chris, while I would guess that precision is required with violins, seeing this guy makes me appreciate the precision so much more- look at how neat he keeps his shop!

Dec 03, 2010 11:27 AM #15
Pat Haddad, ABR, CRS, ePRO, GRI
Keller Williams Indianapolis Metro NE - Carmel, IN
Carmel, Fishers, Westfield IN Real Estate Expert

Chris---not sure how I missed this one.  I saw the title and had to click on it and then in the first picture is a cello.  I used to play--very long story that I will not go into here.  My dream is to buy a quality instrument some day and take lessons.  I am originally from Columbus, Ohio.  Maybe this is a sign?  Thanks for the wonderful, wonderful post with all of the great pictures.  So glad you were featured. 

Dec 03, 2010 06:17 PM #16
Richard Weisser
Richard Weisser Realty - Newnan, GA
Richard Weisser Retired Real Estate Professional


I always wonder if there are any of today's new generation that will keep this tradition alive. Great account of a very interesting business!

Dec 04, 2010 12:07 AM #17
Dawn Maloney
RE/MAX Trinity Northeast Ohio Real Estate Specialist - Hudson, OH
330-990-4236 Hudson & Northeastern Ohio

Love this! My aunt is Terry Carlin, she has a wonderful violin shop in Little Italy, I will share this with her. Just beautiful - great job on this post!

Dec 04, 2010 02:06 AM #18
Chris Olsen
Olsen Ziegler Realty - Cleveland, OH
Broker Owner Cleveland Ohio Real Estate

Hi Karen -- Thanks, Peter is quite the expert and since he is right around the corner from me, it's a rare thing.

Hi Barb and Sal -- I totally agree, it is quite a treat to meet someone so skilled and yet so affable.

Thanks Diane and very true about a hidden gem in our community.

Hi Melissa -- I totally agree about the amazing craft. Good luck on your posts as well. I enjoy reading yours too! :)

Hi Sally -- Thanks, and so true about history and skills. My daughter said WOW when she saw her fixed bow.

Hi Debe -- Thanks and good points, I'm going to do that.

Hi Laurie -- Astute connection, makes perfect sense.

Hi Pat -- Thanks.  My daughter just joined a community orchestra that has 50% kids and 50% adults, what a treat, so it's never too late to pickup, regroup and learn. I took some trumpet lessons as an adult and played for a while after stopping as a kid, so much fun and enjoyment.

Hi Richard -- I wonder if the business, like many fields today, has become more about business from a production standpoint than a true craft.  I would wager a guess that view predominates today as a whole, not entirely.  I wonder if violins made today will be the Stratos of the future 200-300 years from now -- only time will tell. 

Hi Dawn -- Small world, thanks for the info, I love going there and eating pizza at Mama Santas.



Dec 04, 2010 06:30 AM #19
Ryan Case
SCA Real Estate - Anaheim, CA

Wow, 56 years, that is a long time! Great photos, and thanks for sharing!

Dec 04, 2010 06:54 AM #20
Mitchell J Hall
Compass - Manhattan, NY
Lic Associate RE Broker - Manhattan & Brooklyn

Chris, Peter is a master craftsman. So rare these days. Great blog. BTW: There have been numerous articles in local blogs and business publications here about NYC artists and musicians moving to Cleveland. They're calling "The Cleve" the new Soho.

Dec 04, 2010 09:01 AM #21
Christine R. Sutherland
Sun Realty USA, Inc. - Punta Gorda, FL

Fascinating, a true craftsman of the old school, thanks for bringing us this story!  I love violin concertos and other classic music!

Dec 04, 2010 10:54 AM #22
John Novak
Keller Williams Realty The Marketplace - Las Vegas, NV
Henderson, Las Vegas and Summerlin Real Estate

There's a lot to be said for the skill, dedication and experience of someone like this. Nice profile of a local musical artist, Chris!

Dec 04, 2010 11:16 AM #23
Chris Olsen
Olsen Ziegler Realty - Cleveland, OH
Broker Owner Cleveland Ohio Real Estate

Hi SCA -- Yes, a very long time - Peter has been building and restoring stringed instruments before I was born!

Hi Mitchell -- Cleveland does have a very lively arts and music scene.  The Cleveland Orchestra is rated as one of the top 5 orchestras in the world, and it has a very diverse group of arts and music venues, which is often overlooked by outsiders as well as some locals.  When Broadway shows leave NYC, they come here 1st oftentimes and we have such a strong theatre district for only being a mid-sized city.  That said, I think NYC will always be #1 by far.

Hi Christine -- Totally agree.

Hi John -- Yes, a craft honed over decades of dedication, something to really, really admire.

Dec 05, 2010 05:00 AM #24
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