Kitty Smith

Kitty Smith
1912 - 2005

Kitty Smith made her first instrument while studying violin at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music, impressing her father, Arthur Edward Smith enough to start her in the workshop of A.E. SMITH & Co. Pty., Ltd. , in the early 1930's. It was here that she began to learn the broad spectrum of repair and restoration techniques to instruments of the violin family.

Kitty married in early 1938 in Rabaul, and presented her husband with a son in November of that year, continuing to make instruments there until the outbreak of war in the Pacific, arriving back home in Sydney in 1941. After this sabbatical she reclaimed her career with A.E. SMITH & Co., and as she was staying in the family home ( as happens ) making her instruments in her father's private workshop.

In 1949 Kitty entered a competition for violin makers in the Haig Nedderland adjudicated by some members of the International Society of Violin and Bow makers ( ENTENTE INTERNATIONALE ) the panel of judges were evidently so impressed with her work that William Beare of London, nominated her for membership to the ENTENTE INTERNATIONALE, she was accepted and awarded a certificate as Master Violin Maker.

She worked her way up in the business and became Managing Director of the Company in the early 1960's, a position she enjoyed until the Company ceased trading in 1972, when she retired from the business. Since this time, she has continued her calling, and is widely recognized as a maker of exceptional artistic ability, with excellent tonal qualities.

Author; Deborah Peacock

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