geoff1954

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About geoff1954

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  1. A few years ago I had dealings with Vernon's violins in south Manchester. I was very impressed with their professionalism. But, like other music shops, they are closed for business at the moment. Have you thought of using an established online seller? I know that Ebay is considered a dirty word on this forum but, if you can't wait until the lockdown finishes, it is an option to consider.
  2. geoff1954

    Maidstone query

    Most Maidstones are the same type: dark varnish, reasonable construction. Made in Bohemia, I'm fairly sure. But a few look more German to me. And I've seen two violins with the Maidstone label which were definitely French. One actually had a JTL label.
  3. I beg to correct PhilipKT's post. Certainly in the UK it is not necessary to be a member of any union to appear on screen as an 'extra'. I took part in a short TV series as a musician extra. They wanted to film people who knew how to play, and filmed us. They did not record the sound but, instead, used the sound of a professional group of musicians. So there is no excuse for showing people who don't know one end of a violin from the other.
  4. Those cracks to the front look very clean to me. If they 'go together' precisely, producing no ridge, then surely they can be easily glued? Without removing the top. And no cleats needed..And that could be done for tens, rather than hundreds, of dollars.
  5. I can tell you what has worked best for me. And for a couple of other people I've discussed this with. I am a lifelong cellist. For various reasons I thought I'd like to play the violin as well. I concentrated on the violin for about six months, making good progress. When I picked up my cello again I found it okay but I made occasional stupid mistakes. e.g. Playing an open G when the the music said E. ( My brain was reading bass clef as treble clef, or something like that!) After a couple of weeks sticking to the cello this problem stopped.) So the conclusion is: don't keep switching from one instrument to one which is similar but different. After I had spent a decent time (a year?) on the violin, then the cello, I now find that I can switch from one to the other without making a fool of myself. I guess that the more different the instruments are, the less likely the brain will confuse itself.
  6. Thanks. As I feared. But worth asking.
  7. Can anyone suggest the origins of this violin? No label except a for a repair carried out by W Vaus dated 1927, London. (In fact, the label says 'reconstructed by....'. ) The violin has a grafted pegbox and ebony crown on the button. Inlaid purfling, not particularly neatly done, and not the most elegant of pegbox. The heel of the neck is quite thick (a 'transitional neck?) but that is presumably a later addition? Unusually short saddle. Is it mid-19th century German, with an attempt to look older? Or is it actually older? Could it be English?
  8. 'Hmmm...is this post meant to solicit mainly out of the ordinary pieces OR just our favorite pieces?' ............................. Thanks for your suggestions. It is meant to give players a chance to suggest pieces which others may not know about: just to spread the enjoyment.
  9. Thanks, Matesic. Just printed off the Mazas. (its actually op 80, not 8). Enough to keep me happy for a few weeks.
  10. Many of us practice our instruments by ourselves for hours each week (possibly many hours!) and we can become bored with playing the same pieces. For cellists the repertoire is rather thin, and even for the violin it is good to try new music. Is there any music which you could recommend, and which you think others may have missed? Preferably not too difficult. (I am surely not the only one to have the sheet music for several concertos, but find only a small proportion to be accessible.) And preferably available freely through IMSLP/Petrucci. To start the ball rolling; For violin, the sonatas of Vivaldi. I find that some of the movements are exceptionally good, whereas others are not. Certainly worth downloading all of these. For cello: I had played the cello for maybe 20 years before I came across the Rachmaninov cello sonata. Its superb, and not too difficult. (Although, if you have an accompanist, I'm told that the piano part is terrifying!)
  11. This needs repairing and it is not a cheap repair. Send it back.
  12. Hi. This is a problem which seems to afflict many older musicians. It is hard to read music on the stand especially when sharing a stand in an orchestra, because the distance is too far for 'reading glasses' to help. In my case I stopped playing in my local orchestra because I found it frustrating that I could could play the music perfectly well, but not if I couldn't see it! I've spoken to others of 'mature age' and it seems to be a common problem. I play the cello where the stand has to be a reasonable distance away. One solution is for each player to have his/her own music and stand, so that the distance will be shorter. But this is contrary to the culture in string sections and, of course, makes page-turning a problem. Any other suggestions? Someone told me about 'intermediate distance' glasses: does anyone out there have experience of these? Thanks.
  13. Thanks. It sounds as if my JTL violin might have been made as late as 1960s. Presumably in France.
  14. I can find plenty of information on the origins and early years of JTL, but nothing about the demise of the company. Does anyone know when they stopped making violins? (I get the impression that they still make violin cases, but not violins). Why do I ask? I have a fullsize violin labelled 'J Thibouville-Lamy. Paris and London' which looks to be virtually new. It has all the JTL features so I'm sure it is genuine. Can it have been made before 1960? 1950?
  15. For what its worth, prices on Ebay for fractional size violins are much less than full size. This applies to both newish and old violins. Just supply and demand I suppose.