International Violin Competition of Indianapolis, a another effort was happening simultaneously, to identify the finest violins created so far this century.INDIANAPOLIS - While jury members listened to the top violinists of a new generation at the
The Indianapolis competition's 21st Century Violin Search, announced last spring, attracted submissions from 45 luthiers from the United States, Canada, Germany, Iceland, Italy, Switzerland, Ukraine and the United Kingdom.
The stated goal of the search was to identify several violins that the competition would purchase to be loaned to current competition laureates for a period of four years as part of their prize. The competition already owns the 1683 “ex-Gingold” Stradivarius, so that addition would start a collection for the competition.
The unstated goal was to support the work of modern violin makers, whose instruments been gaining in reputation, with many calling the 21st century a new "Golden Era" of violin-making. The selection process put the violins in the hands of concert violinists, IVCI jury members and competition participants, who blind-tested and ranked the instruments over the course of the 17-day competition. Here's how that process worked:
Five concert violinist participated in a two-day pre-selection process to choose 12 violins that they considered suitable for a violinist launching a solo career. Those violinists included Stefan Milenkovich, Tessa Lark, Tarn Travers, Joel Smirnoff, and Peter Vickery. (They actually chose 13 violins.) Those violins were blind-tested and ranked by jury members and competition partipants and narrowed down to the top five violins. Representatives of the competition then chose two violins to purchase from those five.
The two violins chosen for purchase by the IVCI are:
The other violin makers in the Top Five are:
The remaining violin makers whose instruments made the Top 13 were:
In addition, the competition held a 21st Century Violin Search Exhibition Saturday afternoon at the Indiana History Museum, displaying all 45 violins submitted and making them available for testing.
All 45 luthiers were invited to attend, and more than a dozen (pictured at the top of this story) were there with their instruments. The remaining violins included instruments made by Gregg Alf, Luiz Amorim, Terry Borman, Edward Byler, David Chrapkiewicz-Rapkievian, Alvaro Corrochano, Jedidjah de Vries, Christopher Germain, David Gusset, Jordan Hess, Hans Johannson, Marty Kasprzk, Kevin J. Kelly, Dylan Kole, Alina Kostina, Francis Kuttner, Todd Matus, Raymond Melanson, Myroslav Putsentela, Nataliya Putsentela, Orest Putsentela, Raymond Schryer, William Robert Scott, Peter Seman, Ted Skreko, Evan Smith, William Stapp, Christopher Ulbricht, Jason Viseltear, Marilyn Wallin, Isabelle Wilbaux and Ute Zahn.
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