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About TunaDay

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  1. The most interesting thing for me is that they actually call out "German silver", which is not actually silver (Ag), but a white alloy of nickel, zinc, and copper.
  2. So glad someone was smart enough to scoop up the Moennig viola at a great price. Fantastic instrument with a fabled history, including the repair that was done by Mr. Moennig himself. The previous owner, Richard Parnas, told me of falling off the stage at Wolftrap while playing this viola. The top plate was destroyed. It just happened that Mr. Moennig had kept another piece of the same wood from when he built the Primrose viola, which was used in its restoration with flawless results. This is a glorious instrument that I always loved. Someone got a great deal...
  3. Not bad... Lot 26 VIOLIN BELONGING TO ALBERT EINSTEIN. Violin with spruce top, maple sides, back and neck, carved scroll headstock, 1933, Sold for US$ 516,500 inc. premium EXTRAORDINARY BOOKS AND MANUSCRIPTS 9 Mar 2018, 10:00 EST
  4. Oh well. Just working through the tedium of preparing my will. Leaving instruments to a school seemed like a great idea for a moment, since I was the beneficiary of alumni fine instrument donations in the past. Now I realize why instrument collections, like those at the Smithsonian and the Library of Congress, are accompanied by endowments to care for them.
  5. When I was an undergraduate at a prominent Ivy League college many decades ago, I was in a conversation with the chair of the music department and he told me about a collection of musical instruments that were left to the school by alumni. They were sitting in a closet because there was no program to catalogue or care for the instruments. I asked to go through the closet and found some very interesting instruments. More recently, I've noticed that some of our prominent musicians were loaned instruments by their conservatories when they started their music studies, including Juilliard and the Royal School of Music. Are there prominent collections of musical instruments held by colleges and conservatories that we hear little about? Perhaps schools like Curtis, New England, Thornton, Oberlin, and so on? And are any of these schools looking for instruments that might be willed to them, perhaps as living will artifacts for tax purposes?
  6. Does anyone know how much Stradivarius (or any other top shelf maker) would have charged for his/her instruments, converted to today's dollars or Euros? Were they priced comparable to today's Chinese imports or German factory instruments?
  7. It's probably easier to simply contact Alvaro, who works down the hall from Julie at Reed-Yeboah.
  8. So... If I purchased a high-end modern instrument that wasn't antiqued by the maker, are there specialists who can antique that instrument for me? And, if so, is that a complicated process? Also, is there any risk to the performance quality of the instrument?
  9. I believe this is a 1689 Andrea Guarneri.
  10. Congratulations on holding a competition and to the winners! Will there be photos of the winning instruments and comments from the judges posted somewhere? Would be very educational to hear about how they came to their choices. Also, would be interesting to know why there is little correlation between the top winners in workmanship and tone. Does that mean that workmanship is how pretty it is and tone is about how interesting the conversation is after you actually meet? Thanks for any insights.
  11. Would someone know more about "resonance boxes"? Whenever our quartet plays on a hollow raised floor, we always need to recalibrate balance because the cello appears to gain advantage, presumably due to the pin dispersing vibrations into the floor. Is this a possible explanation? Thanks.
  12. Here's a bit more detail on the instrument. http://americanhistory.si.edu/collections/search/object/nmah_606130.
  13. I would argue that if you apply supply chain economics to the string instrument as a commodity, supply and demand are only connected if you master the distribution channels ~ in macro-economic terms, the "stocks" (inventory) and "flows" (how the consumer gains access to the instruments.) Ebay, Amazon, Craigslist, and so on are simply distribution channels, in that they do no manufacturing. It happens that the greatest "stock" that exists are at the low-end and factory-manufactured. Market forces (and some smart supply economists) figured out they simply had to figure out the "flows" between producer and consumer and VOILA! the mass marketing emerged. For the high-end, Tarisio appears to have scratched the surface on creating a distribution channel ~ but they are middle men in the distribution chain. The best option (get ready...) for luthiers is to come up with an auction site of their own, brand it as "The Luthiers' Showroom" ~ or something catchier and easier to promote. Each luthier would be able to promote their own "inventory", you would have a "flow" established, and people shopping for that unique instrument will have a marketplace in which to shop. Using the search engine in Google to find a luthier is twenty years ago and too difficult to administer. Someone with web developing skills should simply get WordPress, buy the "auction plug-in" (professional version) and start a website for VSA members. Charge a nominal amount for administering the marketplace and donate some of the proceeds to the VSA scholarship fund. Just saying ~ the world has moved on. Not the supply or demand, but the distribution channels need to be reexamined...
  14. Thanks for all this information. It started me down several paths. That video of the da Salo with three strings is pretty amazing. I use to think the discussions of violas were sparse. It's even thinner on the bass.
  15. The contrabass article is really interesting and provides some lines for further investigation. I knew about Maggini. When looking at the string section in any major orchestra, you realize there's probably a great deal of variation in design and, especially, hardware. Thanks!