Despite its humble beginnings, Eastman Strings has built a worldwide reputation for quality, making the company a favorite of string teachers throughout eastern Idaho.

The company was founded in 1992 by Qian Ni after he graduated from the Boston School of Music. Qian Ni operated the business out of the back of his vehicle until 1994, when he opened his first master workshop on the outskirts of Beijing. His workshop was based on the Old World workshops found in Germany and France. Qian Ni uses chisels, gouges and scrapers to handcraft the violins, violas, cellos and basses that have become a favorite of string teachers around the world.

Chesbro Music Company began selling and renting instruments by Eastman Strings because area teachers were requesting the instruments for their students. While Chesbro does not stock every model produced by Eastman Strings, they all remain available to Chesbro customers. Under an arrangement with Eastman, Chesbro customers can request to try a particular instrument – even when it is not in stock – on a 30-day approval program.