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On leaving school at 18 Mark studied Musical Instrument Technology at Merton College, London, graduating with distinction.  He then went on to the internationally renowned Newark School of Violin Making, again graduating with distinction.

On graduation from Newark, Mark restored and repaired for The Royal College of Music before setting up his workshop in Cornwall. Twenty-six years on, Mark has become a fine and established contemporary maker.  His violins, violas and cellos are played by musicians all over the world.

As well as making new instruments Mark continues to repair, restore and carry out sound adjustments.

In any discipline of the arts it is important to refresh, improve and learn new skills.  Over many years, Mark has studied Antiquing and Copying Techniques with Samuel Zygmuntowicz; Varnish and Colour Theory with Gregg Alf; Fine Restoration with Hans Nebel.  All of these courses taking place at the Nicolo Paganini Convention at Parma, Italy.

Detail of viola scroll. Made by Mark Jennings. Instrument in the white (pre-varnish).

Mark's work is based on the 17th and 18th century Cremonese traditions of Amati, Stradivari and Guarneri.  The study and analysis of these great Master's work has led Mark into producing a quality of instrument that is played by both soloists and orchestral musicians at home and abroad.

Throughout the making process sound is paramount, working towards an excellent sonorous character, giving ease of response and an evenness of tone.  Timber is chosen carefully for both its acoustic and physical properties, each piece of wood is worked to achieve these sound requirements.  The model, the arching, the set-up, even the varnish all influence the final result.