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Mark Caudle

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About Mark Caudle

  • Birthday 06/06/1953

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    cmarkcaudle@yahoo.com

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  • Gender
    Male
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    Lodz/Colchester
  • Interests
    Professional baroque and renaissance cello, bass violin/viola da gamba and viol player in UK and Poland since 1973. Also makes baroque instruments - mainly celli. Around no. 15 + some restorations of baroque wrecks!

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  1. There is another critical parameter which is elasticity. You can imagine that a solid rod would not function as a string at all because it has virtually no elasticity. Whereas a rubber string would have too much elasticity to produce much sound. Therefore the thick lower strings need to have enough elasticity to respond easily but not too much to produce a strong sound.
  2. Yes and they weren't always small like the Hoffman models that are mostly used now. The Stradivari Saveuse is similar size to this one and has the hole for playing da spalla.
  3. 1736 is an interesting date for a violoncello from this region. It is rather close to the time when treatises like Majer (1732) described the violoncello only as an instrument played across the chest with a strap (da spalla). This is exclusive in all the German language treatises from the last quarter of the 17th century up to about the time of this cello. it is likely that Quantz was already describing different circumstances as he is a bit later. But there are other examples of important cellists from this period like Vandini (associated with Vivaldi) who apparently played cello solos in a gamba position with underhand bowing. So it is not impossible that this cello would have been played in a similar way. Perhaps because of its slightly small size it is more likely that it was intended to be played da spalla. There is an enormous variety of sizes of cello like instruments from German speaking lands at this time as would be very obvious if you visit somewhere like the museum in Nuremburg. I suspect most except the very large ones were played da spalla and I say that against my own interests as a player of violoncelli da gamba! The nomenclature of all these instruments is completely unhelpful-bass geig, violone, viola da basso etc etc. Not sure from the photo but is there an extra piece at the bottom of the heel of the neck to raise the overstand apart from the little shim?
  4. What does that old label say? Maybe its actually the maker-American 1853?? Seems possible to me.
  5. If it was mine I would repair the original top and dump the new one!
  6. If it was made from a viol you would expect the central part of the front to be of one piece as Barak Norman bent the central stave of his viol fronts.
  7. Also: "Reconstitution d'une violoncelle d' Andrea Amati" by Roland Houel which has very detailed information.
  8. https://www.thestrad.com/lutherie/deconstructing-the-andrea-amati-king-cello/10386.article
  9. The problem with these instruments is that all the measurements and features are wrong compared to good historical examples. The neck ( and therefore string length) is too short, and also too thick and narrow, the bridge is much too high, and the construction is based on violin techniques with regards to linings, blocks etc. Usually the plates are thick and heavy as well compared to historical viols. They sometimes work ok but do not sound like viols!
  10. He is alive and well and i played a concert with his group last week!
  11. https://allegrolokalnie.pl/oferta/wiolonczela-lutnicza-4-4-doskonale-brzmienie-stan Here is a cello currently for sale on the Polish internet auction site. No idea if it is really a Chamot and there is no photo of the label. The description says that there is "a visible label inside of the Polish Lutnik, Jan Chamot"
  12. There is no such thing as a 400 year old viola d'amore. It might be 400 years old and been converted to a viola d'amore in the ?18th century? The first viola d'amores are from the 4th or possibly 3rd quarter of the 17th century and they were wire strung without sympathetic strings. The first ones with gut and sympathetic strings are from the 18th century. If it is a 400 year old converted viol it probably didn't originally have back linings but sometimes very small upper linings. Without seeing it, most likely it isn't 400 years old.
  13. The best viol plans I know are those drawn by Stephen Barber of the Colichon and Meares now in the Royal College of Music collection (the same Meares as the one in the article by Dietrich Kessler). I don't think these are readily available and Stephen Barber has now passed away. But really worth searching for as they are superbly detailed.
  14. Thank you. That's a good idea and I will try something similar next time!
  15. I agree that a brush is much better at getting into the grain lines than a cloth. I mostly use a medium stiff brush rather bigger than a tooth brush!
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