16" Benjamin Ruth viola, Ithaca 2001
Among the most highly regarded contemporary violin makers, Benjamin Ruth was awarded gold medals for both violin and viola in the 2012 Violin Society of America international competition. Active in violin making for over 40 years, his instruments have been featured by leading violin shops nationwide. Today, Ruth concentrates on working directly with musicians to create ideal instruments for demanding careers, with the help of his wife Susan. They live and work in Boston's North Shore.
Committed to the highest standard of artistry in violin making, Ruth is a leading participant and teacher in the Oberlin Violin Making Workshop, where makers from all over the world come together to exchange ideas and knowledge. He has also participated in similar professional development events in Europe.
A graduate of the Violin Making School of America, Benjamin Ruth received advanced training from 1979 to 1982 with Rene Morel at Jacques Francais Rare Violins. After opening a shop in his native Philadelphia, Ruth joined Reuning & Son Violins in Ithaca, New York in 1989, specializing in restorations. He remained in Ithaca to concentrate on making violins after Reuning & Son moved to Boston in 1994. For the last twenty years, he has concentrated exclusively on producing new violins, violas, and cellos for discerning artists.
Having been awarded gold medals in three distinct VSA competitions, he has been designated Hors Concours, and has served as a judge for the VSA. He also received a top prize for tone from the British Violin Making Association in London.