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Daniel

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  1. There seems to be a consensus that Bergonzi was a student of Stardivari and Guarneri. He was actually trained by Guarneri del Gesu and oddly after the death of Stradivari's son, he inherited Stradivari's studio. His violin, I think, lies somewhere in between Stradivari and Guarneri del Gesu in terms of the style and sound. Although, his violins are often compared to those of his masters, they are definitely not of the same quality. But there is no doubt that his instruments are the first class concert instruments. He made almost exclusively violins. His output was very little compared to Stradivari who made almost 1200 instruments. I think he made about 150-200 instruments. That's why his instruments are very rare today. A few years ago, a violinist from California paid $850,000 for a Bergonzi violin. Your violin is most likely to be a German reproduction. Many great makers' violins were copied and mass produced in Germany and Czech from the late 19th century. : I recently purchased a violin labeled (in Latin, and I know to take labels with a grain or two of salt),as one made in 1733 by Carlo Bergonzi. To look at it, one can see that it is obviously an old violin, with the expected wear and tear (it even smells old!) It needs some repairs/restoration (open seam, superficial crack, bridge, fingerboard resurfacing, soundpost adjustment, pegs, and nut), but it can definitely be restored to a satisfactorily playable condition. I will be taking it to a violin maker for repair and appraisal. I have done some research on Carlo Bergonzi and have found out a few things about him and his violins. I would deeply appreciate any information that anyone might have about him or his violins. Thanks to everyone.
  2. The following is an article from Cigar Alficinado. It's a bit old (Winter 1995), but it has some interesting things about Stradivari and Guarneri. It also has some information about how modern chemists are studying the varinsh of Stradivari violins. http://www.cigaraficionado.com/Cigar/Afici...134420825771876 Joseph Curtin is probably one of the best American violin makers. His violin fetched more than $34,000 at a Sotheby's auction (highest price paid for a violin made by a living violin maker). He wrote about the varish and how it affects the sound. Curtin's approach to violin making is scientific, so you might find intersting things on his web site. http://www.msen.com/~violins/about/varnish.html : Aloha, all. : I'm writing an article for the American Oil Chemists' Society : on Strads and the ancient wood vs. varnish vs. both = why they : are so marvelous. : I used to play myself professionally so I'm not a stranger : to the subject. I am, however, way out of date. I'd appreciate : any hints as to the latest investigators into the question : plus anything else that might be of interest. : Thanks.
  3. That depends on what you define as a "Strad." There are lot's of Strads in the market partly because Stradivari made close to 1200 instruments including violins. Nobody know exactly how many instruments he made and how many of these have survived is also unclear. But there seems to be a consensus that about 200-400 instruments have survived. However, there are only about 20-30 that are the first class concert violins. Others have various problems: improper restoration, misuse, serious structural damage. etc. Of course all these things affect the value greatly. The first class Strad would cost well over $2 million dollars, but you can pick one up from an auction for less than $300,000. As a matter of fact, one strad from 1701 was auctioned at the Sotheby's last November for $220,000. : N/t Means no text. no message.
  4. I don't think your teacher did that on purpose. After all if he or she were to benefit from selling a "fake" instrument, he/she would have not sold the instrument to your in the first place (person he/she knows). It's most likely that he or she bought the instrument from a dishonest person. After all violin/viola teachers are teachers not expert appraiers. But I think you should ask the teacher to pay you the amount that he/she owes to you. : about 8 months ago i perchased a viola which i just last month finished paying for with a label claiming it was hadmade in germany from my previous teacher. yesterday i brought it to a highly recommended violinshop to get new pegs (which were not properly fitted). after looking at my viola he informed me that the label had been switched and that the viola was all machine made in the chec republic and is worth little over 800, which i paid 1700 for!!!! i am wondering if i should confront the teacher that i perchased it from. if anyone can give me any advice please help me!! : my email is kapman001@yahoo.com
  5. : : How does the flexibility of bows affect the sound? : In my experience, it's not the flexibility that does it. There is a lot more to it than that. For some idea of all that is involved, I suggest you read Andreas Grutter's on-line "book" titled "A Bow on The Couch." You can see it at : http://www.xs4all.nl/~bowmaker : I posted this reference before - about a month ago, but it seems to have been removed, because I can't find it in "SEARCH." : Andy
  6. How does the flexibility of bows affect the sound?
  7. In general older instruments have wider puflings. This is apparent in violins made by Brescian makers such as Gasparo da Salo and Giovanni Paolo Maggini. I believe that there are several photographs of these instruments available on the net. Instruments by later makers tend to have narrower pufflings. This does require skills and attention. The decorations (puffling-like) on the back of the instruments are often found in early German and Italian instruments especailly Maggini violins. : Another question - excuse my ignorance, please. : I was noticing how different violins seems to have : different widths of purfling. : Do some schools or national styles or eras tend to : employ a wider or narrower purfling or is it rather : a matter of individual maker, skill, or aesthetic : preference. Are there any general rules for identification : of instruments along these lines with regards to : origin or age of instrument? : Thank you again, : Austin
  8. Does anyone know about a violin maker Glen Collins?
  9. I think between 50-60% is OK. : What humidty level is considered dry? Is there a point : at which I would need to take precautions against my : violin being exposed to too little moisture in the air? : Thanks for the information. : : Michael
  10. What are the checkpoints? : Sartory bows are generally stamped on the handle (upside down in the typical French way) and also under the wrap. The stamp should be 20.5 mm long. I did, however, recently sell a great one with the stamp not "upside down" which is very unusual. I have also seen them made for other shops (generally earlier bows) and I have seen them with no stamp at all. In any event, Sartory's work is distinctive and there are at least 5 or 6 checkpoints that should be present in all his work. Therefore it should be relatively straightforward to identify your unstamped bow. My first suggestion is to check under the wrap for a stamp. : : : : : I have a gold-mounted bow which I bought as a Sartory : : many years ago (before they become so outrageously : : expensive) which I have loved for all these : : years. Absolutely fantastic stick. Issue here is that it is not stamped and I've always wondered if it was truly authentic. Have you seen many Sartory's that : : do not have a stamp? And if so, how/why might : : this have occurred and are such bows : : particularly difficult to authenticate? : : Thanks in advance, : : Jeff : : : : : Personally, I prefer the earliest Sartory bows. I find that they generally have the densest, most dark beautiful wood and are the most slender and elegant. Some of his earliest works have plain pearl eyes and divided buttons and occasionally were made for (and stamped by) shops of the period. Sartory's later work became, in my opinion, rather heavy and clunky with fat sticks. Probably his assistants made a lot of the later bows because they are also a bit less refined. In fact, though, I do not believe that the market differentiates the values of the various periods of Sartory's work. Probably condition and weight are the main determining factors. : : : : : : : Do any one know which period sartory bows are most expensive?
  11. Jacob Stainer died in 1683. : I have one from 1717 I think, can't quite make out the stamp. What is this violin worth, and anything else about Stainer that you know.
  12. Sartory made some of the best bows between 1920 and early 1930. : Do any one know which period sartory bows are most expensive?
  13. Prague (aka Praha) was occupied by Germany before 1942. This city didn't experience any taumatic destructions. That's why Prague has one of the best preserved old buildings in Europe. As a matter of fact, it retained most of the buildings before the war. So, I guess it is possible that the violin maker didn't care much about the Germans and continued to make violins. : Al, : I have a 1942, Juzek Master Art Copy of a Joseph Guanerius, made in Prague. Were they producing these violins in the midst of WWII? Was Prague occupied at this time by the Germans? Just wondering. : george
  14. Thanks for the comment. I just have a small question. A few days ago, I came across a stainer copy. The owner asked me for $450. Do you think this violin is worth that much? Thanks again. : All violins are hand-made, using more or fewer power tools--the hand-made/factory-made thing is a marketing ploy, usually by the makers of more expensive "factory" violins against less expensive "factory" violins. (Like cannibalism, where we don't eat people, but our enemies down the road do, most factories don't make factory violins--their competition does!) For instance, I don't know any modern maker who doesn't use an bandsaw, and on the other hand, though it's been tried, I don't think there will ever be a commercial violin made the way that a car can be. Even the old "factories" used individual hand work, with different makers working on different parts of a violin using exactly the same tools and processes that a "hand" maker would use. Commonly these words are used to distinguish violins made by individual makers with their own name vs violins made under a shop name, so in that sense whether it's hand-made or factory-made depends entirely on its attribution--not on any particular process used to make it, or even on the results, good or bad: there are many, many bad "hand-made" instruments which are worse then good "factory-made" ones : : I am looking for an old violin from the 19th century. : : How can I tell that the violin is factory-made? Is it : : possible to distinguish a well made factory-made violin : : from a hand-made violin?
  15. : : Perlman's set is highly recommended everywhere, but I don't like it at all. : Same here. I bought the separate No. 9 , 10 and regretted. Good thing it was only midpriced. Perlman's tone is not suitable for Beethoven, let alone Bach - it is too rough for classical period German music. At the fortes in Kreutzer, he really tries hard, and scratches the violin strings, producing an ugly and blurred and unidentifiable. I do not like Perlman at all in general (remember the terrible Tchaikovsky in Moscow?) I apologise to all Perlman fans, but this is a matter of personal taste. I'm very happy to find someone who shares my taste. I too bought Perlman's recordings of Beethoven 9, 10 and Live in Moscow. I hated them, and sold them at a second-hand shop. Perlman is much renowned for his "honey-sweet" tone, but I found it very rough and scratchy in the Beethoven, and rather harsh and reedy in Moscow.
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