Bass Set-up: I have had the pleasure of knowing Jay VandeKopple for about two decades; first as a colleague, and more recently as co-facilitator and director of the Oberlin/VSA Bass Workshops. Jay was instrumental in forming that group, and has done an admirable job of running it for the last several sessions. Jay’s background in music, mathematics and acoustics makes him uniquely qualified to assess and adjust the tone and playability of string instruments, especially the string bass, his own personal instrument. He is an excellent teacher with many years experience, and approaches his instructing in a hands-on, no-judgement manner. He is extremely organized, a trait which has served the Oberlin workshop (and previously, the Catgut Acoustical Society) well. Personality-wise, he is both decisive and likeable, a rare and desirable combination in an instructor.
Bass Restoration Fundamentals: Robert McIntosh possesses a unique set of skills which makes him an ideal mentor in double bass repair and restoration. No one I’m aware of has a better understanding of the engineering and structural elements that make a bass work. He has a broad background in architecture, woodworking, construction, music and lutherie, along with decades of hands-on experience. Having worked beside him (as facilitators) at the Oberlin/VSA Bass Workshop, I can attest to his effective, non-egotistical style of communicating with both students and peers. Robbie has single-handedly invented methods of double bass restoration which are now in use in shops all over the world. I cannot imagine a better instructor for the UNH Violin Institute in the area of bass repair and restoration.