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  1. Such an interesting debate! I think every artist mentioned here does play what Beethoven wrote. All the notes are there (ossia or not), the pianos are soft and the fortes are strong. The difference between them lies in what Beethoven didn’t write, which is fair game and not necessarily limited to HIP. In fact, none of the violinists mentioned here do anything related to it. On the topic of PatKop, it’s hard for me to take her seriously outside of new music, where she excels. I know the folks at the Berlin Phil love her, and they know about violin much more than me, but I just do not see the appeal. I think I have listened to pretty much everything she has released, often multiple times, to see if my opinion changed, but I find the sound to be too often forced or undefined, almost never lyrical. She tends to “square up” and play more academically when the passage is hard, which to me makes the rest of her playing seem inauthentic. She is often compared to Gitlis, but he never did that, and instead he would allow himself to fail, but without compromising his idea of a passage. I fail to understand how posting a video of Pekka Kuusisto playing Beethoven somehow denies the artistry of Oistrakh et al. Why can’t we enjoy and debate both? On a different note, I frequently see people talking about how Oistrakh, Heifetz, Menuhin, etc, while being great, did not care much about historically informed interpretation or being true to the composer, and they cite that as the reason why they like newer artists. Of course they cared! You can find many interviews and masterclasses talking about that very same thing!
  2. He plays a Strad now I think, from Tarisio. I liked his playing and the use of multiple ossia passages, also his bow vibrato. With a sound that airy I often wonder how it sounds in the hall.
  3. I haven’t tried those two particular violins but every Strad I’ve played has been much, much better than any Vuillaume I’ve played. On a different note, it’s hard to press on Strads and Hilary Hahn loves playing with a very focused bow and lots of weight, so maybe that’s why she likes JBV so much.
  4. Something I’ve seen often in trials is, when the player knows they’re playing an old instrument, they want to work with it and if they force the sound they think it’s their fault, not the instrument’s. First thing they do with a modern instrument is try to choke it, so if it behaves like an old Cremonese they don’t like it. Maybe that’s why Vuillaume/Becker etc did what they did.
  5. The Vuillaume’s I’ve heard and played have been consistently good instruments that did everything well but nothing magical. If it weren’t for his marketing and Hilary Hahn I think they wouldn’t rate as high. The one Lupot I’ve had the opportunity of trying was much better and interesting. They are good investments of course, but most top tier moderns I’ve played were better tonally, at least for me (Kelvin Scott, Gregg Alf, Burgess, Curtin, Bayolo, Sora…the list is long).
  6. Most soloists I’ve heard play on old instruments, so it´s hard to make a comparison. I haven’t seen Tetzlaff or Josefowicz live, for example. By the same token, several older instruments have disappointed me. While I've liked every del Gesu I’ve heard, several Strads left me cold (for instance, the guitar shaped one that Joshua Bell used to play).
  7. Funny, I thought Vengerov’s Strad to be almost disappointing. I heard him in recital and I only liked the violin when he played solo. Another violin I loved was a small Guillamí, owned by a visiting professor when I was in my undergrad. It made me hunt for a Guillamí myself, but they’re very rare.
  8. True. That’s why I’m looking forward to hearing Ben Beilman play the Ysaye del Gesu, I wonder whether the violin will make the same impression on me!
  9. Quite simple, what is the best instrument you’ve ever heard live? For me, Isaac Stern’s Guarneris, Panette and Ysaye, particularly the Panette. I got lucky and heard Anne Sophie Mutter play on her Stradivari, Capucon on the Panette and the concertmaster of the Paris Orchestra on his Stradivari in 3 consecutive days in the same hall and the Panette was incredible, so much better than either Strad. The Ysaye I’ve heard three times, when Khachatryan used to play it, always in the same hall, and it was incredible, way more depth and volume than Kavakos’ Willemotte Strad that I heard the same year in the same hall. I’ve also heard great things about the Soldat del Gesu and the Soil Strad, but I’ve never had the opportunity to hear them live.
  10. Andrew Dipper makes a Paganini model. Since Paganini used many bows I don’t which one he is copying, but the images are beautiful. https://www.givensviolins.com/product/violin-bow-classical-a-dipper-paganini-model-inlay-2/
  11. I have both Wittner and PegHeds and the latter are way better. They feel more like normal pegs and changing strings doesn’t take an hour. Aesthetically they’re also better, of course.
  12. Yes, June 26th and maybe 27th.
  13. Hi all, I am playing in a music festival in Italy this month and have saved a couple of days towards the end of it to visit Milan and Cremona. Any recommendations apart from the Museo del Violino? Perhaps violin makers I should visit? Thank you!
  14. I had them installed by him in his workshop. Amazing. They feel closer to normal pegs than Wittner (which I have on another violin) and it doesn’t take a million years to change a string.
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