Gilis violins

Les ateliers Gilis violins

At different times in his professional career, Pascal Gilis has managed the making of quartet instruments in quite different ways. He has worked alone in his workshop as well as part of a group (as in the Cremona school). He was guarantor of a finished instrument for each participant in an amateur violin making course and trainer of apprentices in his workshop and in evening schools. These different experiences and other combinations of circumstances have led to the opportunity to create a manufacturing workshop in Romania as well as Belgium.

As various craftsmen work on the same instruments it was important to guarantee consistency in the manufacturing process. It was therefore necessary to standardize the models and processes. The ateliers de la Dyle was founded on this principle. This is a solid entry-level range, designed using the luthier’s know-how and bringing together all the positive aspects of empiricism and craft tradition: a good hand on good templates.
We follow, guide and organize the production techniques, and maintain a strong link and vigilance for consistency of quality in the routines that may settle in.

The Meteny range was developed on this foundation with certain improvements. The choice of woods was refined and better soundboards were used. The models are more elaborate in their design and aesthetics. The work on the archings follows a different manufacturing process to achieve a superior sound. The varnish is also the result of a little more detail and time spent in our workshop in Brussels.

Gilis freres instruments are higher quality with more iconic models such as the Lord Wilton, the Betts… With a good conceptual understanding, the roughing is prepared by apprentice luthiers in our workshops in Belgium and then finished by experienced violin makers in Brussels. The finishing includes the details of sound and voice, thickness, bass bar, the tuning of the resonance frequencies of the plates, varnish, assembly, and adjustments. This work is very similar to the work of a high-end luthier, but with several hands. These instruments are already played by many students in conservatories as well as orchestra professionals and remain very accessible.