Watch the Indianapolis Competition Livestream

Happy Father's Day - My Father's Gift

June 23, 2010, 7:08 PM ·

I'm a few days late with this.  Father's Day was June 20.  The sentiment expressed here, however, is enduring.

Does this violin have a gorgeous varnish or what? It was made some time around the year 1900 in Germany. It belonged to my violin teacher, who lent it to me when I was in high school. It had and still has a beautiful, warm sound. My family didn’t have enough money to buy a good violin like this. After I had played it for a few years, I told my father that I would be very unhappy when I had to give it back to my teacher. “You don’t have to give it back,” my father told me. “It’s yours now.” He had been paying my teacher a small amount of money every week for years. This violin is, in more ways than one, the greatest gift I’ve ever received.

From My violin

Happy Father’s Day.



Reprinted from another blog with the permission of the author.


My website
My other blog


June 24, 2010 at 07:47 PM ·

what a wonderful story. your father sounds like a great man

June 24, 2010 at 09:28 PM ·

Yes, nice story!


June 25, 2010 at 03:45 PM ·

Pauline -- I can't remember if I've asked you this before.  I'm just a bit curious -- do you know if your violin is one of the turn-of-the-century(ish) "conservatory violins" that were imported from Germany and France for the student market?  My older violin is German, and has the words "Conservatory Violin" pressed into the wood on the back of the scroll.  The word "conservatory" arches (like a rainbow).  The word "violin" runs straight across the scroll, underneath "conservatory".  These instruments were imported in great numbers, and were usually mail-ordered from firms like Sears & Roebuck and Montgomery Ward after they'd reached the U.S.  When I acquired my violin, it was in great need of repairs and replacement parts.  My luthier has worked miracles on it, and it sounds absolutely wonderful!!!

June 25, 2010 at 05:54 PM ·

Marsha, my violin does not fit your description of a Conservatory violin.  I don't think it was made for student use.  As I said, my teacher, a professional violinist, played it before I did.  Since I've owned it, it has never required any serious work by a luthier.  I really love its sound.

Barry and Anne-Marie, I'm glad you enjoyed the story.  Yes, my father did some wonderful things for me.

This article has been archived and is no longer accepting comments.

Facebook Twitter YouTube Instagram Email is made possible by...

Shar Music
Shar Music

Pirastro Strings
Pirastro Strings

Corilon Violins
Corilon Violins

International Violin Competition of Indianapolis
International Violin Competition of Indianapolis

Virtual Sejong Music Competition
Virtual Sejong Music Competition

Dimitri Musafia, Master Maker of Violin and Viola Cases
Dimitri Musafia, Master Maker of Violin and Viola Cases Shopping Guide Shopping Guide

Metzler Violin Shop

Bein & Company

Bay Fine Strings Violin Shop

Leatherwood Bespoke Rosin

Annapolis Bows & Violins

Los Angeles Violin Shop

String Masters

Bobelock Cases

Things 4 Strings LLC



Sleepy Puppy Press

Jargar Strings

J.R. Judd Violins, LLC

Southwest Strings

Nazareth Gevorkian Violins

Laurie's Books

Discover the best of in these collections of editor Laurie Niles' exclusive interviews. Interviews Volume 1 Interviews Volume 1, with introduction by Hilary Hahn Interviews Volume 2 Interviews Volume 2, with introduction by Rachel Barton Pine