The instrument collection of The Peabody Institute includes a wide variety of standard orchestral string and wind instruments, as well as auxiliary and specialty instruments which many students may be called upon to play as part of their ensemble assignments. This collection is administered by the Ensemble Office in support of Peabody ensembles and music education classes. The Peabody Institute does not loan or lease instruments to the general public. All students borrowing or leasing Peabody instruments for class, lesson, or ensemble use must follow the procedures outlined below.
For most instruments the rental fee is $100 per semester. Rental of a bow is $75 per semester. Some especially valuable or recently rebuilt instruments may have a rental fee of $200 or more per semester, and these instruments are only made available to majors who are performing in large ensembles.
Payment of rental fees must be made in the Ensemble Office by cash or check at the time the instrument is borrowed. We do not accept credit cards in the Ensemble Office, and you may not pay an instrument rental fee in the Business Office.
Summer rentals may be made only if a student is pre-registered for the following fall semester, and the fees are the same as for one semester. Woodwind instruments may only be rented for the summer after the instruments have been returned from their annual maintenance. There is no specific date when woodwind instruments will be available for summer rentals, so rental fees are generally prorated depending upon when the instrument is actually made available.
Rental fees are waived for students who need to borrow an instrument for music education classes, and for students assigned to play an auxiliary instrument which they do not personally own, during the school year.
All instruments in the collection are insured; however, there is a $1000 deductible on the insurance policy for which the student borrowing or renting an instrument is responsible, in the event an instrument is lost, stolen, or damaged while in the student’s possession.
Care of Instruments
Anyone borrowing or renting an instrument is expected to care for that instrument while it is in their possession as though it were their own. Instruments should be kept in the cases provided when not in use, and should be cleaned after each use. Modifications may not be made to any Peabody instrument. If an instrument is damaged or requires repair while in the possession of a student, no repairs should be attempted. The instrument should instead be returned to the Ensemble Office for an assessment of the problem, and the office staff will determine how to proceed. Bow rehairing is the only exception to this policy.
Instruments which are returned to the Ensemble Office exhibiting signs of neglect or abuse will result in a fine being assessed against the borrower, and may also result in the revocation of any future instrument borrowing privileges.
Students should take care in preventing the loss or theft of any instruments entrusted to them. Instruments should not be left unattended or in non-secured places. Lockers for instruments are available through the Office of Student Affairs. Any Peabody instruments which are found to have been left unattended anywhere on campus will be seized and returned to the Ensemble Office, and the student responsible for that instrument may have their borrowing privileges revoked and be assessed a fine.
Sharing and Exchanges of Instruments
Students are not permitted to swap Peabody instruments among themselves for any reason. All exchanges of instruments between students must be made through the Ensemble Office, so that a clear record is maintained of who is responsible for which instrument.
Sometimes it may be necessary for two students to share one instrument. In these circumstances both students using the instrument must have a signed instrument rental agreement on file in the Ensemble Office, and the students will be equally responsible for the instrument, as well as for agreeing between themselves on a method of time-sharing the instrument fairly. The use of a locker to which both students have access is recommended in these situations.
Use of Instruments for Off-campus Engagements
It is impossible for the Ensemble Office to monitor the use of most of the standard orchestral instruments borrowed from Peabody when they are used for local off-campus engagements, or when they are taken out of the Baltimore region for audition or performance opportunities. Students who remove Peabody instruments from the campus are advised that they should be even more vigilant in protecting the instrument against loss or theft than they are while on campus. Peabody instruments may not be taken out of the United States for any reason.
Harps, mallet keyboard instruments, timpani, drum sets, amplifiers, and other large equipment represents not only a substantial investment to Peabody, but also requires appropriate transportation and handling when being moved to an off-campus location. Anyone intending to utilize equipment of this nature for an off-campus event must make their own arrangements for safe and appropriate transport of the equipment to and from Peabody, and must have the prior written approval of the Ensemble Office before the equipment can be removed from the campus. Rental fees are almost always charged in these circumstances.
If safe and appropriate transportation cannot be arranged, such requests will be denied. Harps, for example, cannot be stuffed into a car trunk, and marimbas cannot be rolled down the sidewalk to a gig. The protection of Peabody’s investment in these instruments outweighs any other considerations for their use in off-campus engagements.
Instrument Sign-out Sheet
For short-term instrument borrowing, such as for a single ensemble rehearsal or lesson, or to practice with an auxiliary instrument, an instrument sign-out sheet is located in the Ensemble Office. Students should request the instrument they need from the Ensemble Office staff, and if one is available, should sign the instrument out, indicating the date and time, and the instrument’s maker and serial number on the form. When the instrument is returned to the office, they should indicate the date and time of the return on the form.
This procedure is for short-term instrument borrowing only – usually no longer than 24 hours. Any instruments borrowed for a longer period will require that the student fill out and sign an instrument rental agreement form, whether or not any rental fee is involved.
Strings, Reeds, and Other Supplies
Stringed instruments will be equipped with all the correct and necessary strings when the instrument is obtained from the Ensemble Office. They will not be new strings, as they are replaced only as required. If a stringed instrument borrowed or rented from the instrument collection experiences a broken string, students should request a replacement from the Ensemble Office. The replacement may be made by the student if they are an experienced player, or by a member of the office staff, or faculty member in the case of music education instruments.
Reeds will be provided to the faculty teaching instrumental music education students, who will ensure that each student has a serviceable reed for the instrument they are learning. Students assigned to play auxiliary reed instruments in ensembles will be provided with reeds as necessary to perform their job. Saxophone majors borrowing an instrument will be provided with two reeds of their choice when receiving the instrument, and will be responsible for obtaining additional reeds themselves after that.
Other miscellaneous instrument supplies not included with an instrument can sometimes be obtained from the Ensemble Office at a nominal charge if the student cannot obtain them on their own. However, the Ensemble Office is not a music store, and our inventory of these items is limited and a supply is not guaranteed.