Nathan Abbe and Cooper Jonas are set to graduate from the Violin Making & Repair program at the famed North Bennet Street school this summer, pending their final projects: a violin for Abbe and a cello for Jonas.
There's one catch: They must complete their projects in their apartment, which they turned into a makeshift benchroom.
North Bennet Street is a school known among woodworkers for its spectactular craftsmanship and extreme attention to detail. Like pretty much everywhere else, the school shutdown with the onset of COVID. It's currently preparing to reopen its in-person, full-time program - implementing a staggered schedule as of September 1. It says precautions, protocols, and other interventions are in place.
Nathan Abbe applying varnish to his violin
Students had to figure out a way to get their projects done. Abbe and Jonas transformed their "former" living room into a benchroom.
In the video interview above, school staff member Kristen Odle asks the two about the challenges of woodworking in an apartment.
Though not an ideal setup, as workspaces go, they say the space is comfortable and efficient. Violins hang from curtain rods and a five gallon bucket lends a hand to cure varnish.
The interview is part of the school's "In the Making" video series, in which students and school community members are asked about their lives and work. Learn more at nbss.edu/in-the-making.
Founded in 1881, it's still called North Bennet Street School even though its address is now on North Street, still in Boston’s historic North End. Check out our feature on the school here.
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