Which bows should accompany Strads, Amati's etc.

February 12, 2018, 1:45 AM · We often hear about great violinists using the elite instruments IE the old Italian masters etc, but which bows do they use.
For instance what was the bow(s) that Heifetz used , or Josh Bell, Vengerov and the rest.

I had the luck to play on a Strad and Guarneri for a rehearsal a long time ago, (which I thoroughly enjoyed) but never played with a very expensive bow.

Replies (10)

Edited: February 12, 2018, 2:01 AM · Here you go...
Seems mostly Tourte, FN Voirin and Peccatte...


Edited: February 12, 2018, 3:15 PM · Don't forget Heifetz's Kittel and Pinchas Zukerman had one too, featured prominently on one of his LP covers.

I read that Kreisler preferred German bows.

February 12, 2018, 8:11 AM · Hi,

There is a segment about this in the video Homage with James Ehnes that goes into length about the topic.

To clarify some things... Kreisler used Hill bows and changed frequently. Heifetz owned a Kittel that his luthier thought sounded better with his del Gésu but preferred playing a Tourte (from a 1987 interview-article in Strad). Zukerman uses and prefers modern bows and has for a while. The last time I heard him he was using a bow by Lee Gunthrie. Oistrakh used a Nurnburger for a long time and later a modern French bow that was a gift from Igor.

So, it varies...


Edited: February 12, 2018, 3:07 PM · There is a few threads here and elsewhere covering bow choice of famous virtuosi, eg http://www.violinist.com/discussion/archive/6323/



For cellists, a few names appear here: https://www.tapatalk.com/groups/cellofun/which-bow-do-they-play-t19710.html

In addition to the point made above that many top soloists maintain a collection of different bows used for different repertoire, there seems to be three overall clusters: a) the classic golden age bowmakers from the 1800s including Torre, Peccatte, Persoit, Kittel, top Vuillaume makers etc; 2) early 20th century French masters such as Sartory, Fetique, Richaume etc; 3) current day modern makers, at least some of whom have quite a following also among top soloists

Side note: while picking up a Ludwig Bausch bow today (which is truly outstanding) I had the chance to try an FX Tourte cello bow for the first time - quite the experience!

And sorry for being a cellist stalker but this forum is really great!

February 12, 2018, 3:27 PM · “Torre” should of course be Tourte - autospelling typo. And I should underscore that the mentioned are examples only; many others could be added, especially in the B group, my personal favourites including eg EA Ouchard and JJ Millant
February 12, 2018, 4:30 PM · You can edit Torre to Tourte, and then get your second post deleted by reporting it as Spam. Accepted practice on here. Then I can report this one - Hope I remember.
Edited: February 12, 2018, 6:02 PM · The moderator has enough stuff to worry about without you using her services to edit your posts.

You can delete your posts by simply clicking on edit then delete post though without involving the moderator by reporting it as spam.

February 12, 2018, 5:56 PM · I have a friend who owns a few of Mr. Heifetz's bows. A Tourte, a Simon, and a Nurnberger. Ostriakh also liked Nurnbergers.

What ever sounds good! Another person I know plays a GDG with an Ouchard.

February 13, 2018, 3:59 AM · Well, thank you very much for all the info, I shall be checking out the links you have kindly posted.
Edited: February 13, 2018, 9:16 AM · To answer the OP's question: a "name" bow that should be bowed to before even touching it.

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