Originally posted by rbny: Does anyone know of any stores selling musical instruments -- preferably vintage/ethnic -- in Rome, Florence or Venice? Thank you.
I know there is a shop on the Ruga between San Polo and the Rialto in Venice that sells msucial instruments, but I have no direct kowledge of the merchandise. They mght have some vintage instruments or only new. It has been there for years and years so it is not some fly by night place. The Church of San Vio has a small "museum" of lovely antique instruments; someone there might be able to direct you to a store selling vintage or enthnic wares. Ruth
There is also a shop in Venice near Piazza San Marco that has musical instruments. I believe it is around Campo SS Filippo e Giacomo, on the backside of the Basilica. It is somewhere in that general vicinity. They have electric guitars in the window so you can't miss it.
In Florence instrument shops are mainly mainstream. The largest is Ceccherini - via dei Ginori (actually, it is housed in the Ginori palace and belongs to the Ginori family). Smaller shops are:
Checcacci - corso dei Tintori Saporetti e Cappelli - via dei Conti
Onerati, on via Il Prato, is a very good shop for wind instruments, probably the best selection in central Italy and a good workshop.
Play! drum and Percussion, via Monteverdi: I should check if the shop is still open. Several years ago was among the best shops in Italy for percussions, but they went broke and later reopened with this new name. Since then, I did not hear about them again.
There are several violin makers shops, but I guess the original poster probably will not be interested. In Sesto Fiorentino, few meters from the train station, there is a large store for electronic music equipment (an even larger one should be in Siena, but it is a lot of time I do not visit them).
Pistoia is an important center for cymbals and metal percussion instruments. The main maker is UFIP
I'm looking for plucked or bowed strings, but not violins or cellos. More esoteric/historical/local ethnic stuff like psaltries, zithers, tiny lyres, etc. Also small percussion. Not electronic, not wind.
In Italy you can look for mandolins and guitars. The places to go for zithers would be Austria or Southern Bavaria, where they are commonly used in folk music; I would start in Munich and go towards Vienna looking for (keywords: Zither, Hackbrett, Zupfinstrumente).