I have a question wich appeared during teaching one of my students.
I checked her violin while tuning it (she is just 4 months with me, cant tune herself yet) and I was quite amezed. It is an very responding instrument with good bass, warm and sweet e-string and a not too weak a-string. I didn't have the time to compare it exactly to my violin but I have a general question to those who maybe played on some first class proven violins yet.
My question is, do the best instruments, those who carry in a big hall, sound nice under the ear aswell? Or is an sweet sounding instrument in a small room not likely to carry?
The thing is, I always discovered, that the "better" instruments have something harsh in their sound wich goes away when listened from the distance and played in a certain way. On the other hand there are many very nice and sweet sounding violins who can not be used solistic.
Is this just because they lack this kind of edge? Or is it possible, that there are violins out there, who sound sweet on one hand, with an clear and pure sound while having the power to project over an orchestra or an stainway played ff?
My guess would be, that those instruments may be a few if ever existed and that those coming from some italien region... but hey, we all know that story's, but who really got to play such an instrument once what seemed perfect and somehow schizophrenic, because it combines two qualities, wich are some kind of contrary?
My violin has some very good qualities, but its certainly not perfect. It has a somehow weak a-string and wolfy c' notes, also the g string in upper register has a bit too much surface noise. It can sound quite harsh in small rooms, but I feel its a good concert violin because it has lots of power and a good quality sound but its not perfect all round.
I heard, that the best violins also project a pianississimo in the largest hall. Do they do that with purity and special colour or with that kind of harshness to the sound?
I played some very new violins from good makers and many of them seem to go after some harshness rather than purity (not all of course). But is that really the only option to project? losing the ability of sounding nice from near?
Related to that I think about some videos where soloists demonstrate on their fiddles and you hear the sound from very near. That often sounds quite scratchy. That would speak for the theory, that you need some kind of harshness indeed. For example kavakos Interview and demonstrade some things on his violin: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zwMd-7OZDWI
For those who know the movie "the art of violin". Listen to Gitlis demonstrating (ok its gitlis, he is special anyhow :) but still a stradivari) spring sonata or something.
I would be glad if someone could share some experience of how a really good violin feels. And yes, I know its personal and subjective. But qualities are qualities. What are you looking for soundwise. Please lets not start talking about response, bows, etc. also if its related if not connected to the sound more than expected. Anyway. Best regards to ya
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