Kessler, Dietrich M(artin)
- Murray Lefkowitz
(b Zürich, July 21, 1929; d Dec 12, 2006). English string instrument maker and viol player of Swiss origin. He was trained as a violin maker at the Schweizerische Geigenbauschule in Brienz under Adolf König, from 1946 to 1950, passing his examinations with distinction. In Switzerland he made violins, violas, cellos, double basses, viols, quintons and guitars. He also studied the cello as a performer. In 1950 he moved to Haslemere, England, where he worked for the firm of Arnold Dolmetsch, making and repairing viols and studying the bass viol with Nathalie Dolmetsch. In 1952 he joined the firm of Albert Arnold Ltd and worked under C.W. Jacklin in string instrument repairing, meanwhile continuing to make viols in his spare time. Kessler began his own workshop in Welling, Kent, in September 1955, and in 1959 moved to London. During this time his instruments, particularly his viols, became increasingly popular, and he was also active as a performer, touring and recording throughout Europe and the USA at various times with the Elizabethan Consort, the English Consort of Viols and the Jaye Consort of Viols. In ...