April 5, 2006 at 10:17 AM
Between the violin shopping, the music, and the coffee, I decided that if ever I were to live in a city, I would pick Seattle. What an enjoyable trip!
So, long story made short, I brought home a new violin. I made my decision after sampling over sixty violins and taking four out on trial. I’d already made my mind up by Thursday, but an interesting turn of events led me to fellow violinist.com member Gennady Filimonov, member of the Seattle symphony. He got my friend and I into their concert that weekend, and we met for drinks afterward.
He had a beautiful new Italian violin by Gianluca Zanetti that he urged me to try, so we met the next day at his home. He played the Zanetti along with my favorite pick that I’d brought with me, and the difference was pronounced. My former favorite lost most of its tone just a few feet from it, while the Zanetti filled the room with its robust, vibrant voice. I wasn’t as fond of it under my ear, but I considered the fact that most violinists end up with a new instrument that is similar to the old one because they are unwilling to branch out when listening for quality sound. It would be unwise to listen narrow-mindedly.
My ears made an important discovery this weekend. Rather than keep the sound to myself, I needed to better understand how to “share” it with the room, listening to the sound that came back to me instead of the immediate production happening under my ear. When I focused on this, I could then hear the workings of a good violin. I could tell that this violin not only sounds great in the room, but has potential to mature and grow with me as I spend more time with it. After playing both for my friend, I saw that she also agreed that the Zanetti was the best she’d heard on this trip.
I bought it. I brought it home and proceeded to deafen all my students today as we played together in my little studio. I’m staying up late, now, thinking about it, and when I close my eyes, I dream about violins, just like I used to dream about ponies when I was a girl. I’m in love.
Laurie, it wasn't so complicated, trying out all the violins. With 90% of them, I knew with one bow stroke that I didn't want them. I just had a lot of weeding to do.
Much like the romances in my life, I fell in love with two others, each of which I was certain was "the one", but the third proved to be the best fit.
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