Um, they even called him Mr. Tuba.
When it comes to violins and other stringed instruments, the artistry isn’t just in the way they’re played. It’s also in how they’re made. Both of those aspects of the violin captured Thomas Sparks as a boy growing up in northern New Jersey. There was something about the instrument’s sound and shape that immediately appealed to him. “It’s the king of the string instruments,” he said. “It’s pretty appealing with the sound and the voice. The way it is able to project is amazing.” The violin has fascinated Sparks ever since. For nearly 30 years, the visiting lecturer in instrument