Instrument Rentals

Renting vs Buying

Families are encouraged to rent an instrument rather than buy, especially if the student is not yet ready for a full-sized instrument. Rental companies have a very reasonable rate and provide many services, including repairs, size increases (for when your student grows!), and accessories.

If a family is interested in purchasing an instrument, we strongly recommend speaking with Dr. Reimer. Good instruments are expensive investments that are best purchased with professional assistance as there are many cheap options that turn out to be headaches for those who buy them.‚Äč

Our New Partnership with SHAR

Once you have signed your child up for strings class or lessons, the next step is obtaining an instrument! We are excited to announce our new partnership with SHAR Music. Located in Ann Arbor, Michigan, SHAR is the recognized market leader in North America as a supplier of string family instruments, bows, sheet music, cases, strings, and accessories. SHAR is also one of the largest suppliers of Suzuki Method materials in the country. They offer the best selection and quality of bowed string family for the youngest beginner to the accomplished professional. We are excited about this new relationship and the many perks it will offer.

  • All Supplies in One Package
  • Low Monthly Payment
  • Return/Exchange at any time
  • No Extra Fees
  • Extended Warranty Included
  • Easy Communication Between DGSP and SHAR
  • Fast Service and Repairs

SHAR will mail instruments directly through the mail or will also be delivering a shipment (which is necessary for cello or bass) to the Great Lakes Center for the Arts on September 4. For any questions about the rental process, please contact Dr. Reimer at (616)828-8321 or

Rent your instrument through SHAR

Instrument and Size

Students are welcome to choose any of the four-stringed instruments - the violin, viola, cello, or bass. Families should consider the logistical challenges and added rental cost of the bigger instruments (cello, bass) before making a final decision. If a student has a strong desire to play one of the bigger instruments but the cost is prohibitive, scholarship assistance is available. There are many sizes of instruments to fit many sizes of students. Families should check with a DGSP teacher to determine which size is appropriate for the student at this time. If the family already owns an instrument, please show it to the DGSP teacher to determine if it is the appropriate size and if it is in suitable condition to be used for the class.

Instrument Safety and Care

Stringed instruments are valuable and fragile. Students will learn about good instrument care as part of their classes. Parents also need to assist the student in taking good care of the instrument at home and when it is being transported. Stringed instruments are extremely sensitive to fluctuations in temperature and humidity, so they should not be kept in a cold or hot car, near a heating unit or drafty room in the house, or any other place that may cause the instrument to go out of tune or break. Instruments are easy to break, so it is important that they are put away in their cases when not being played. Instruments in a soft case (canvas) need to be kept out of home traffic routes and carefully moved so they do not bang into doorways or other obstacles. If an instrument is damaged, the parent should immediately contact the teacher and/or the rental company to determine how to fix it, a parent should never attempt to fix the instrument themselves.

The Dorothy Gerber Strings Program offers a scholarship assistance program for families who cannot afford to rent an instrument. Please send an email to Dr. Reimer at for more information or to apply for an instrument scholarship.