Master Luthier Mathijs A. Heyligers

Curriculum Vitae

Mathijs Adriaan Heyligers, born in Holland, moves to Italy in 1975 where he studies violinmaking in Cremona under Giorgio Cè. In 1977 he starts the violinmaking school in Parma where he becomes in 1980 his diploma of master violinmaker under Renato Scrollavezza and Pietro Sgarabotto. He studies violin at the conservatory of music in Parma with the Finish violinist Satu Jalas, granddaughter of Jean Sibelius. He specialises in restoration under Gimpel Solomon and Bruce Carlson, technology of varnish with Geary Baese, Joe Robson and Raymond Schryer.

This combination of technical knowledge and practical experience enables him to have a profound understanding of the needs of every musician. Each of his instruments is made on specific request, based on models of the most important makers of the past, with the use of the antique methods of the traditional art of Cremonese violinmaking. His instruments are played by concert-artists around the world and are regularly used for important CD recordings. Famous international musicians such as Itzak PerlmanRuggero RicciShlomo MintzViktoria Mullova and Misha Maisky have recognised and praised the quality of this work.

Heyligers has received important prizes in international violinmaking competitions such as Salt Lake City (USA 1982), Kassel (Germany 1983) and Cremona. His instruments have been shown on exhibitions all around the world. He has collaborated on numerous musical projects, publications, radio and television programs. He has given numerous conferences on various arguments of the art and history of violinmaking and was professor at the first Master-course of Baroque Violinmaking in Cremona.

Dubai event

During a 2009 tour through the UAE Emirates an entire orchestra of Heyligers’ instruments was played and since then 1 Heyligers violin is on display in the Sharjah palace of the Sultan Al-Quasimi.

Violinmaking on US TV

CBS’ historical (since 1968) sunday-evening news magazine on TV “60 Minutes” (24 mln. watching) for the first time on Violinmaking with an extended interview recorded june 2014 with Master Luthier Mathijs A. HEYLIGERS in his workshop and the historical streets of Cremona, Italy, the hometown of Stradivarius.

It will be on-air Sunday dec.7th at 7pm (New York time) and on the CBS website for back-view. Interviewer Bill Whitaker investigates on the deep thoughts behind the ancient but ever fascinating craft of violinmaking.
The 1999 M. Mann movie ‘The Insider’ with Al Pacino and Russel Crowe.