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What we all hope for...Man finds Strad in grandmother's flat: https://slippedisc.com/2020/09/man-finds-strad-in-dead-aunts-flat/ Of course, Lebrecht,  @CarlStross's favorite critic, should realize that if it really is a Strad, how it sounds makes little difference. :P

MAN FINDS STRAD IN DEAD AUNT’S FLAT

RIA Novosti reports that a Moscow man, Yuri Kurnosov, clearing out his late aunt’s apartment in the Tula region, found a violin, which turned out to have been made in Antonio Stradivarius’s workshop in the 1690s.

Before Sotheby’s get all excited, instrument is not in prime condition. It has no strings, one peg is missing and no-one knows what it will sound like after restoration.

strad-russia.jpg

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Yup. I went to Ria Novosti - still using the old web url, new owners; as Putin dissolved Ria Novosti, but couldn't find the article.  OTOH, my Russian is non-existent, and I was using google translate. So maybe Strad or Stradivarius just doesn't translate. Nyet?

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Very, very sceptic.

Non- expert people usually know that it is a Strad reading the label and we know how many of those are around. 

Additionally, if someone in Russia possessed before the revolution a strad the family was usually very wealthy. So I'd give the story more credit if the violin would have been found in an old castle hidden in a place where the Bolsheviks wouldn't find it. 

And finally Norman Lebrecht seems to jump on any story which promises some sensation. (To the degree that pianist Sokolov refused the Cremona Music Award on the ground that he doesn't want to be seen the same 'artistic' level as Lebrecht who received before the same award.) 

https://orpheuscomplex.blogspot.com/2015/09/evidence-grigory-sokolov-refused.html?m=1

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Strads found in Russia usually seem to be from his "German Period".  :lol:

https://siberiantimes.com/culture/others/news/stradivarius-violin-revealed-68-years-after-being-brought-from-germany-by-a-soviet-soldier/

And the one that Lebrecht reports seems very similar to this one described below,. not found as currently claimed, and the story originally dates to 2014:

http://rapsinews.com/news/20140528/271422769.html

https://www.themoscowtimes.com/2014/05/28/russia-turns-to-interpol-to-find-owner-of-stradivarius-violin-a35941

.......and it's a Markie, too.  :rolleyes:

 

 

 

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I've asked this in the past, but can any of you ancient luthiers tell me when an authentic Strad last came to light in someone's attic, or was recognized hiding in plain sight? Failing that can anyone cite a case in which an instrument by any prestigious maker was rediscovered? This to help me in my quest.

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6 hours ago, matesic said:

I've asked this in the past, but can any of you ancient luthiers tell me when an authentic Strad last came to light in someone's attic, or was recognized hiding in plain sight? Failing that can anyone cite a case in which an instrument by any prestigious maker was rediscovered? This to help me in my quest.

There was a few years ago a rare find of a brother Amati viola in Italy. 

It was found in an old land house in Italy and subsequently shown in a strad poster. 

(Hope my memory put everything correctly together) 

I can't remember though if this was verified by a dendro.

The best place to find a strad cello  seems to be the trunk of a New York taxi (just kidding.)

There were some Strads which were stolen and disappeared. One resurfaced in the shop of Grubaugh&Seifert. (How long ago was this? Back in the 1990s?)

 

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7 hours ago, matesic said:

I've asked this in the past, but can any of you ancient luthiers tell me when an authentic Strad last came to light in someone's attic, or was recognized hiding in plain sight? Failing that can anyone cite a case in which an instrument by any prestigious maker was rediscovered? This to help me in my quest.

IIRC, a GDG (listed as something else) sold at auction a few years ago, and caused some little stir on MN when it was identified.

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15 hours ago, matesic said:

I've asked this in the past, but can any of you ancient luthiers tell me when an authentic Strad last came to light in someone's attic, or was recognized hiding in plain sight? Failing that can anyone cite a case in which an instrument by any prestigious maker was rediscovered? This to help me in my quest.

the Alcantara Strad  

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I really don't count the various stolen Strads with living, corporate, or institutional owners, as you couldn't get title to them.  The Alcantara and the Totenburg are typical cold cases where the original owners got them back in court, and in cases like the Lipinski and the one stolen from Min-Jin Kym, there was immediate response by the authorities that ended in recovery by the police. 

Going by the numbers, there may actually be as many as 50 or so incognito Strads floating around that never got a paper trail, probably mostly dogs in terrible condition, labeled as something else, and dismissed by their current owners as being rubbish of one flavor or another.  I just wouldn't expect many to surface in Russia.  I suspect that the most likely place for them to appear is in Argentina, Australia, Canada, or the USA, because, IMHO, the most likely way for a Strad to disappear was into some (probably middle-class) immigrant's baggage before the things became unattainably expensive.  :)

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8 hours ago, Violadamore said:

I really don't count the various stolen Strads with living, corporate, or institutional owners, as you couldn't get title to them.  The Alcantara and the Totenburg are typical cold cases where the original owners got them back in court, and in cases like the Lipinski and the one stolen from Min-Jin Kym, there was immediate response by the authorities that ended in recovery by the police. 

Going by the numbers, there may actually be as many as 50 or so incognito Strads floating around that never got a paper trail, probably mostly dogs in terrible condition, labeled as something else, and dismissed by their current owners as being rubbish of one flavor or another.  I just wouldn't expect many to surface in Russia.  I suspect that the most likely place for them to appear is in Argentina, Australia, Canada, or the USA, because, IMHO, the most likely way for a Strad to disappear was into some (probably middle-class) immigrant's baggage before the things became unattainably expensive.  :)

It appears that nobody knows when an incognito Strad last came to light, if one ever did.  It's a bit like the monsters in Loch Ness who all seem adept at avoiding the papparazzi

19 hours ago, Violadamore said:

IIRC, a GDG (listed as something else) sold at auction a few years ago, and caused some little stir on MN when it was identified.

Love to hear more! I expect by now it's been re-identified...

12 hours ago, Clare@Iscaviolins said:

I found a genuine Strad at an auction in UK, but unfortunately it was stolen property so my first call was to the insurers of the missing instrument.

This one too! Maybe I'll persevere with Gardiner Houlgate after all

 

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19 hours ago, matesic said:

It appears that nobody knows when an incognito Strad last came to light, if one ever did.  It's a bit like the monsters in Loch Ness who all seem adept at avoiding the papparazzi

Love to hear more! I expect by now it's been re-identified...

 

It was a mid-30s del Gesu that had a replaced scroll, and had been the main instrument of a well-known Chicago player, who evidently believed it to be a Nemessanyi. The violin made the rounds and ended up at a US auction house that presented it as “attributed to Nemessanyi”. 

It sold for $14k, and was certified by Charles Beare shortly thereafter. I understand that it’s been re-united with a correct scroll.

Probably the best (true) violin story I’ve ever heard.

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The discovery of the Stainer viola a few years back makes me think just about anything is possible. In this case it was misidentified a while ago as a Kloz family instrument, but still valued and owned by a "gentleman' (or maybe it was a "lady"). It wasn't an attic find as we think of it.

If there are still Strads to be discovered I think it would be a similar scenerio. A wealthy family who owned it for generations, perhaps back to the 19th century, and it just hasn't seen the experts in a long time. And maybe misidentified (but still something good-like another Cremonese, or a Vuillaume).  

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1 hour ago, deans said:

The discovery of the Stainer viola a few years back makes me think just about anything is possible. In this case it was misidentified a while ago as a Kloz family instrument, but still valued and owned by a "gentleman' (or maybe it was a "lady"). It wasn't an attic find as we think of it.

If there are still Strads to be discovered I think it would be a similar scenerio. A wealthy family who owned it for generations, perhaps back to the 19th century, and it just hasn't seen the experts in a long time. And maybe misidentified (but still something good-like another Cremonese, or a Vuillaume).  

One could have been picked up inexpensively on some younger son's "Grand Tour", gotten to pre-Revolutionary Charleston or Savannah when he went to seek his fortune, passed from generation to generation with a defective oral history, and be hanging on the walls of some former plantation house a mile up the road from me this very instant. 

"Oh, yeah, that.  None of us play, but it's right pretty.  Somebody told Granddad it's Tyrolean.  What ya charge to fix it up?"  Scream.gif.b0ab9aa3897581118bd76f12e581badc.gif

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On 9/11/2020 at 6:50 PM, Violadamore said:

I suspect that the most likely place for them to appear is in Argentina, Australia, Canada, or the USA, because, IMHO, the most likely way for a Strad to disappear was into some (probably middle-class) immigrant's baggage before the things became unattainably expensive.  :)

That’s a romantic notion :) but since not long after their deaths the masters violins were expensive pieces of portable property (they inventoried instruments in the French aristocrats Homes in 1791)  and if it was important enough to bring along would likely have been sold (“Romanov” Amati) or played (others). Someone who purchased a masters violin on “grand tour” almost surely would have played it amongst friends, and that would likely be traceable, and so Instruments with uncontested provenance like the Clark “Kreutzer” Strad might disappear from public performance but were never “lost” - it was with the same owner just in a closet. I’d think by now a diligent scholar with a nose for violins would hav3 followed up on all these leads, and if it’s still “unpublic” it’s because that’s the way the owner wants it. 
 

You need a war to break the chain of custody & destroy records, then you need secrecy & lack of outside contact& secrecy & fear. Or you need knowing theft/looting which makes the possessor unwilling to show or play it, so it’s forgotten.

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"I suspect that the most likely place for them to appear is in Argentina, Australia, Canada, or the USA, ..."

To quote a famous Australian film "Tell him* he's dreamin" 

:D

I've been looking for years.  I'd be happy to find an unrecognised Smith.

Keep safe.

Tim

* Yes, I know.

Edited by TimRobinson
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