Most of the time we change our strings before they actually break, but occasionally they can cause us a little drama.
That happened last week, when a colleague in the viola section had a string break, right during a performance. It can be even more dramatic, when a soloist has a string break! I also saw this happen recently at a competition, and though the concertmaster offered up his instrument, the soloist chose to go backstage, change the string and then start anew.
Sudden changes in weather, such as temperature or humidity swings, can also make strings more vulnerable to breakage. You might just open the case one morning and find that a string went "pop" overnight. Recently one of my students was carrying his fiddle on his back while cycling and went over a big bump -- later he found his e-string had "come off." Upon closer examination, the loop at the end of the string had been cut through, probably by the hook on the fine tuner. We never did solve the mystery of how exactly that happened!
Have you had a string break recently? What was the story? Do you have any dramatic or interesting string-breaking stories to share? Please answer the poll and then share your stories!
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