When a violist gets past the fundamentals of playing, he or she is usually pleased and surprised to discover the benefits of a step-up viola.
Step-up violas produce a larger and fuller sound, offer a clearer, more pleasant tone, respond more quickly, resonate more powerfully, and allow better control of dynamics (louds and softs). In short, they sound and play better, and help a violist reach his or her full potential. (They also make playing more enjoyable, encouraging the violist to play and practice longer.)
Violas are typically classified in four levels: beginner, intermediate, performer, and top-line.
With beginner violas the focus is on easy play and holding a tuning. Beginners are learning the basics of making the notes, so beginner violas typically don't have the features to produce high quality tone. They're designed for early use.
Intermediate violas are for advancing violists. Flamed, seasoned maple wood gives them a bigger, fuller sound with an open and clean tone. Careful setup of the bridge, soundpost, and strings allows them to resonate more freely. Better bows with high quality horse hair help them respond more readily to the player. Intermediate violas are popular with junior high and high school orchestra students.
violas are made largely by hand of choice flamed maple woods that create a rich, pleasing tone. Individual attention in setup assures that they play easily, respond quickly, and resonate freely. Special attention is given to the evenness of tone from string to string
and throughout the range of the instrument. Performer violas and are designed for use by students, both high
school and college, who take their music seriously.
Top-line violas incorporate all of the manufacturer's best materials, features, and hand expertise to create an ultimate viola. They are used by professionals, studio musicians, and symphony players, as well as some amateurs for whom viola is a serious avocation.
With a good care routine, step-up violas, particularly performer and top-line violas, should last a lifetime — there should be no need to buy another viola. (Ask about Amro's Maintenance & Replacement Plan).
Click here to browse step-up violas.
More questions about violas or stepping up?
Reach an instrument specialist by email here or by phone at (901) 323-8888.