’I think Berlin is one of the best places for a young person to be right now,’ says the violinist

Student - Louisa Staples

Violinist Louisa Staples

My decision to study at the Hochschule für Musik Hanns Eisler Berlin stemmed from wanting to study with Antje Weithaas, who has been my professor for seven years now. But it’s also a wonderful school, so that was a win-win! The master’s programme is pretty free. It’s designed to give you a lot of time for individual development, so the workload in terms of lectures and courses isn’t actually very much, and the focus is far more on your own personal practice. The chamber orchestra projects were a highlight for me. They’re often led by a violin professor without a conductor, and every time it’s been a really great programme and a fantastic week.

One of the great things about Berlin, and one of the reasons why it attracts so many musicians, is that there is so much going on. Most of the music students are involved in a lot of things apart from school, and that’s a big plus for a lot of people – myself included! And if you live in Berlin you can go to a world-class concert every single night and still have to choose between them – it’s very inspiring.

Hanns Eisler is a school that pushes its students to go out and achieve things. I don’t mean this in a negative way at all, as it’s a tough world and industry. If you’re going to be a musician, you have to do auditions, competitions and so on. So an environment that promotes that sort of thing is very good preparation for the real world.

It’s a wonderful place that has done great things for many people, and apart from the school itself, I think Berlin is one of the best places for a young person to be right now. It’s full of musicians and opportunities, and there are concert halls, orchestras and ensembles coming out your ears! There really isn’t a better place to be.

Best of Technique

In The Best of Technique you’ll discover the top playing tips of the world’s leading string players and teachers. It’s packed full of exercises for students, plus examples from the standard repertoire to show you how to integrate the technique into your playing.


The Strad’s Masterclass series brings together the finest string players with some of the greatest string works ever written. Always one of our most popular sections, Masterclass has been an invaluable aid to aspiring soloists, chamber musicians and string teachers since the 1990s.


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