Equipped with a unique understanding of the subtleties of string playing, a comprehensive approach to the investment properties of antique instruments, as well as a keen understanding of the history of violin and bow making, Colin Maki has established a global network that includes distinguished artists, institutions, private collectors, and dealers alike.

Having trained as a professional violinist, Colin entered the world of fine and rare antique stringed instruments when he joined the firm of Carl Becker and Son in Chicago. While working closely with Carl F. Becker, he was immersed in the tradition of one of the great family dynasties of violinmaking and restoration. Ultimately, he spent nearly a decade with the Beckers and as Sales Manager handled the acquisition and sale of some of the finest examples by the great 17th and 18th century masters.

More recently, Colin served as the Senior Specialist and Head of New York Operations for Tarisio Auctions. He was responsible for the acquisition of instruments and bows for both auction and private sale as well as compiling the catalogue for nine yearly New York auctions.

A student of the history of the trade, Colin set out to establish a thoroughly modern company steeped in the traditions of the great firms of the 19th and 20th centuries. Rigorous scholarship, sensitivity to the demands of accomplished musicians, and a profound respect for the craft of lutherie remain the backbone of this vision.

Colin currently serves on the Board of Directors of the Violin Society of America and curates their yearly exhibition of rare instruments.

The Team

Yi-Ping Yang

A native of Taipei, Taiwan, Yi-Ping Yang immigrated to the United States at the age of 18 to further her musical studies, culminating in an Artist Diploma from Yale University and invitations to several of the world’s foremost chamber music festivals. While performing actively as a violist, she gradually became enamored with the instrument trade on her regular visits to violin shops in New York City. Prior to joining our team, Yi-Ping was the Managing Director of Reed-Yeboah Fine violins and is a co-founder of the New York Contemporary Violin and Bow Maker’s Exhibition, which celebrates its 10th anniversary this year.

Through her considerable experience, Yi-Ping has earned the trust of noteworthy performers and collectors both in the United States and abroad. She has worked with musicians in most of the leading American, European, and Asian orchestras and has developed a broad client base that relies upon her for guidance. In addition to representing instruments and bows from the collection, Yi-Ping manages the day-to-day operations of our firm.

Timothy Hager

Timothy Hager was born into a family of avid musicians and woodworkers. Some of his earliest memories are of practicing the piano and viola with his mother, and watching his father and grandfather collaborate on carpentry projects. He began building his first instrument at the age of 16, but put his violinmaking ambitions on hold while he pursued degrees in viola performance from the Peabody Institute and the Chicago College of Performing Arts at Roosevelt University.

Tim has since developed his interest in fine instruments and bows by both antique and modern makers and now devotes regular time to his home workshop where he makes violins and violas based on examples of the great classical makers. A devoted teacher, he is also the head of the string department at New Music School in Chicago where he has a thriving studio of wonderful young violinists and violists.

Based in Chicago, Tim oversees our Midwest operations. Combining his knowledge of the craft with his performing and teaching experience, he maintains relationships with musicians and teachers in cities and conservatories throughout the region and beyond, traveling extensively to serve their needs.

Benjamin Sanford

Bio coming soon

Kelly Talim

An accomplished violinist, Kelly Talim is a laureate of numerous national and international competitions and has given solo, concerto, and chamber music performances in major venues in the United States including Carnegie Hall, Alice Tully Hall, Orchestra Hall in Chicago and Benaroya Hall, as well as across the United Kingdom and continental Europe, Korea, and Japan. Her performances have been recorded on radio as well as American national television, where she was featured on an episode of HBO: Masterclass. Kelly holds a degree in political science, political theory, and international relations from Columbia University and a BM and MM from The Juilliard School.

Kelly’s first experience with an extraordinary violin was during a lesson in which she was handed her teacher’s fine G.B. Guadagnini. Now acutely aware of new tonal possibilities, this opened a window to the world of fine instruments. Shortly thereafter, she fostered her interest in the instruments themselves with an apprenticeship at a local violin shop.

Fluent in both Japanese and English, Kelly was born in Osaka, Japan and raised in the Pacific Northwest and Midwestern United States. Through her strong and diverse background Kelly brings a variety of unique skills to our firm rarely found in violin shops. She is driven by her heartfelt commitment to placing the finest examples in the hands of deserving musicians and developing an understanding of the responsibility of caring for them.

Štefan Valčuha

One of the finest craftsmen of his generation, Štefan Valčuha has maintained and restored many of the most important examples by Stradivari, Guarneri, Bergonzi, G.B. Guadagnini, and countless others. His clientele includes Joshua Bell, Sarah Chang, Kyung-Wha Chung, Pamela Frank, Yo-Yo Ma, Itzhak Perlman, and Pinchas Zukerman in addition to musicians from most of the world’s major orchestras. Instruments from several prominent institutions and collections have also been entrusted to him for his expertise.

Born in Bratislava, Slovakia, Štefan trained in Mirecourt, France and further developed his restoration skills while working in the workshop of Jean-Christophe Graff in Strasbourg. He moved to New York City in 1997 to work with René Morel, where he spent 11 years under his direction. In 2008, Štefan established his own workshop in collaboration with Mr. Morel and continued this relationship until his passing in 2011.

Now dividing his time between new instrument building and restoration, Štefan’s unique access to the finest 18th century masterpieces have profoundly informed his making. His violins, violas, and celli are occasionally available at Colin Maki, Inc. as well as by commission. Owners of Valčuha violins also enjoy access to regular maintenance and sound adjustment from Štefan.