RED WING, MINN. — The most intimate relationship a musician may have is with a precious instrument. And when that relationship breaks down, an elite group of students here can fix it.
At Minnesota State College Southeast, about 85 students are learning to repair musical instruments. Most of them choose from among three specialties: band instruments, violins and guitars (whose students also learn to build guitars).
It’s a rare chance to learn these special skills. Only three schools in the country offer band instrument repair, according to school spokeswoman Katryn Conlin, and no other college offers violin repair. The rarity of the programs here attracts students to Red Wing from across the United States and Canada.
At age 18, Sarah Jensen of Clearfield, Utah, has already been working for several years in the instrument repair shop of her dad, who graduated from Red Wing in the 1990s. As she refurbished