There was an earlier discussion on this site concerning the modern violin makers people prefer. I wanted to add some information to that discussion. I have tried many of the violin makers instruments mentioned in the previous discussion. Greiner, Bellini, Curtin, etc. and they have many wonderful qualities. Also, one of my teachers was Elmar Oliveira (I got My first full size violin from him.) and as a result have played a number of his new violins. I have been fortunate to have owned and/or played on some great fiddles including Strads and Del Gesu's.
I recently came across a wonderful modern violin made by Joe Grubaugh and Sigrun Seifert. I was in their shop while they were gluing up my violin, (Guarnarius, Filius Andreas). I played a copy of a Pressenda they had just finished and it was great! Better than any of the real Pressenda's I've played. I took it out and after a few chamber music concerts, bought it. My colleagues at the Symphony (SF Symphony) are equally impressed with it. I have spent time comparing it to my Guarnarius, my wife's Sanctus Seraphin etc. including listening to recordings of concerts on the different violins and am just delighted with how great the Grubaugh sounds. ( I've had multiple offers in the few months I've owned it.)
For a new violin the Grubaugh/Seifert has a remarkably sophisticated sound, great depth and power and a thick open ringing quality. Not quite as complex as the Guarnarius but more powerful. It is the best modern violin I've yet played. I now play only on the Grubaugh and am delighted with it. I'm curious if others out there have gone from good old violins to modern and if this might be a trend?
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