Chicago-based Trala, the company behind the Juilliard-approved violin tutorial app with the same name, has raised an oversubscribed $1.29 million seed investment round led by Origin Ventures, Techstars Ventures, and LinkedIn CEO Jeff Weiner. Luis Von Ahn (CEO of Duolingo), Bob Meese (VP of Business at Duolingo), and Severin Hacker (CTO of Duolingo) also participated in this round.
Trala CEO Samuel Walder said that the Trala app promises to teach the violin faster and more effectively than “your standard private teacher.” Walder also said that first-time violinists can learn their first song in 10 minutes rather than 3 weeks. “We’re unlocking a skill that has been out of reach to most people for hundreds of years,” Walder explained.
The app uses advanced signal processing to develop easy-to-follow tutorials. And the app has been downloaded over 60,000 times from the Apple App Store. According to AmericanInno, Trala has also taught more than 40,000 violin lessons in 2018.
Here is a video demo of how Trala works:
Founded by Walder and Vishnu Indukuri, Trala is part of the Techstars Chicago accelerator located within the 1871 digital startup incubator. Some of Trala’s supporters include notable violinists such as Chicago’s Rachel Barton Pine and former Juilliard professor Stefan Milenkovich.
“Origin is excited to back the Trala team and the technology it has built. For the first time, anyone can learn violin from an app,” says Prashant Shukla of Origin Ventures. “We bet on technology that drives dramatic improvements in efficiency and value, and Trala’s rapid early growth shows it is delivering this for users.”