Philip J. Kass

Curator of String Instruments
Musical Studies

Philip J. Kass is a respected expert, appraiser, consultant, and writer about fine classic stringed instruments and bows. From 1977 until 2002, he was an associate of William Moennig and Son, Ltd. of Philadelphia, where he handled many of the world’s great string instruments.

Since 1981 Mr. Kass has been a frequent lecturer for the Violin Society of America, the American Federation of Violin and Bow Makers, and the British Violin Makers Association. A member of the Violin Society of America since 1975, he has served on its board of directors since 1976, as vice president from 1985 to 1997, and as president from 1997 to 1999.

Among his most recent publications are essays in The American ViolinJoannes Baptista Guadagnini fecit Parmæ serviens: Masterpieces from the 2011 Parma National Gallery ExhibitionBottega Italiana, the book accompanying a 2013 exhibition in Cremona; and a monograph on British bowmaking, to be released through the Violin Society of America in 2017. A book on the violin makers of Mantua is projected for release in 2018. He has also published articles on both violin and bow makers in The StradStrings, the Cozio Carteggio, and the Journal of the Violin Society of America.

Mr. Kass joined the faculty of the Curtis Institute of Music in 2006.