Have you ever cried by just tuning a violin?
I can not help it. I have to share this with someone.
I am in the market for a better instrument. So I called up this old gentleman who is selling his violins lo and behold - one ow them was a Gasparo da Salo from 1595. (Others included a Maggni and 2 modern Italian instruments)
The soundpost had fallen on the Da Salo and stings were ancient.
But when I repositioned the soundpost and started tuning the instrument, the heaven opened.
Before I knew it, tears were flowing down my face as if I was meeting God himself. I spent the next 2 hours playing that instrument crying and laughing, not beleiving. The instrument made an average schmoe like me sound like one of the great soloists of our time.
I refuse to believe it. It’s impossible that the instrument itself can make you sound like a great master. Yet, I am sobbing like a little kid...
I have seen heaven, but can probbably not enter it.
Time to start saving up.
For lottery tickets.
What's the asking price Tony?
Asking price is 30K eur, and matches the fact that there is no provenance on this instrument. No paperwork, no nothing. And the gentleman broke the top plate in the 70s, but it’s expertly repaired by the luthier that made my current instrument.
1900 markneukirchen copy, I can appraise this without seeing it!!
Yeah, with no provenance I don't think the actual value of the instrument could possibly be even 30k.
Yes Lyndon, I agree, probably a copy. In which case the possibility of fraud somewhere along the chain of ownership should also be considered. Testing the wood for its age would be helpful.
yes, immediately after peeling an onion!
In reply to your question - yes I've cried, when my once stand partner tuned his violin... :o
"Have you ever cried by just tuning a violin?"
That might be a great encapsulation of the impassable gap between luthiers and violinists, lol;)
I haven't cried, but my first time trying a Strad was a thing of wonder and beauty. Ditto a Tourte bow.
Well. With a price tag 30K it’s not going to run away. That’s for sure. Beare could have a say weather this is even remotely a real da Salo and that should determine weather I dish out that kind of money. I may be emotional, but I am not naive.
"I may be emotional.."
The old gentleman seller is crying too, because of his incredible luck at having found somebody that easily duped, I'm sorry to be blunt.
Herman. You were blunt, but also right. On the other hand... the instrument rules.
"Asking price is 30K eur, and matches the fact that there is no provenance on this instrument. No paperwork, no nothing. "
I will cool down and stay away.
Well, I actually have photos of the instrument.
post a link to the photos, does it have a neck scroll graft, that's a must.
I play viola.
There are possibilities that are not just a German copy, too. It could be an unknown maker of the era, or even a talented copyist of a later era. You'll often see those kinds of fiddles sold for the $10k-20k range.
Following Lydia's wise comment: do you have a friend, acquaintance, teacher, etc. that can take a look to the instrument? I'm sure you must know at least one person that can offer some guidance.
Well, I have almost cried - but over stuck tuning pegs - and that was mostly in the 1st half of the 20th century.
This discussion makes me wonder: how many truly *great* violins does any particular luthier make in their life? Even amongst strads, there is a great deal of variance and only perhaps 10-20% could be considered really exceptional.
Gudance I can get, no problems there, but I have decided not to go this way. Tis violin is above my financial possibilities, and that’s that.
>Also some comments suggest I am a naive student or kid, but in fact I am a 45 year old professional violinist with some 100-120 gigs a year.
No, i was just in love . With a piece of wood. I really did cry. And did not sleep that night.
In “Hotel transylvania” cartoons they say you only “Zing” once in life.
Did the varnish smell funny? Maybe they rubbed some shrooms on the chinrest?
"I talked to the owner again and there was a misunderstanding between us. He has a lot of 4 violins and 30K was for the lot. The violin In question would be about 10k"
I would hardly call this thread a more informed opinion, but yes.
Where is this violin at? You made me want to try it.
I na stupid remote village on Slovenian Austrian border. The adderss is Podvelka 47, Slovenia.
Take a week or two off. You'll be amazed how little you can care after some time. You're still in the honeymoon phase. It'll pass. I've wanted lots of instruments, but now I don't care. And if you still want it after that, then buy it more move on. Make a decision and commit to it.
They better play the violin in heaven. My teacher and I are in agreement that we want to hear Bach play solo violin:)
There was already enough cringe here without that addition, Jason.
Luthiers apparently win in both worlds...
Tony, I think you took the light-hearted comments a bit seriously.
I’ll sleep on it for sure. But facts are creeping on me.
I'd be curious to hear a recording of it.
Did not make one. Unfortunately. I might though go there again just for the sake of it. It takes me a 4 hour round trip though...
If the seller is this old, and he lives in a remote village, it's not like he has a lotta options.
Well, I need to muster up some balls to drop the base like this. I do not want bad karma for milking the old man dry.
I think it’s the winner’s point of view Tony. I would pay a price that’s fair enough for the seller.
I suspect the owner might be very pleased to receive 3000 euro for this violin.
Matt - you are absolutely right. I think the price 10K might be the most unfair price for both parties. If the instrument was original, it would be worth 20 times that price. So the price is not fair to him. If it's a Markneukirchen VSO, than the price is not fair to me. Only in case it was made by a reputable maker as a copy and it had some provenance, 10K would be justified.
Martin Mcclean: I kind of doubt that. He has a Enzo Arrassi 1910 and Paulus Morara 1930 in his batch. They are both fine Italian instruments which can go for around 6K - 8K.
I like the pronounced pear shape. I like the hand-carved edges of the f-holes. Haggle.
"He has a Enzo Arrassi 1910 and Paulus Morara 1930 in his batch. They are both fine Italian instruments which can go for around 6K - 8K.
Herman you are right about the provenance and price. The unidentifiable violin is worth less then the known counterparts. Also about the age and time. Definitely.
Your description of the sound is just like the vuillaume that I played and loved. If I found an equally good sounding instrument that wasn't 250k, I would definitely buy it.
look like a 100 year old trade fiddle, if it sounds really good $3000 tops
It's okay to be interested in the violin, but you're hurting yourself by showing over-interest. Take time off, a few weeks. Then talk again later.
I agree that $3k for a German trade violin with a terrific sound is a perfectly reasonable purchase. Indeed, $5k might even be okay if you recognize that your eventual resale value is $3k. (Or $10k, if you have that kind of money, and you are willing to write off the delta in value.)
If it takes a cheap german misshaped violin to achieve that knd of sound.... yes. I want it.
Lydia - you are right. I do not want a big delta in price. I can not afford big deltas. I want it as fair as it gets. Will let this sit for a while. Call him up, thel him my findings and he will either shrug me off or rethink his options.
@Lydia and others, side thread question: not long ago Smile Hsu started a thread which asked for the average price of a professional grade instrument, and the popular opinion seemed to be that it’s around $10K.
well, the asking price was a lot more than three thousand.
$10k is not the average price of a professional-grade instrument. It's about the least you can pay in order to get one.
@Herman no, not this particular instrument.
I'm a bit confused now. If 3K is what buyers should be willing to pay for
The average price of a "professional" violin will very much depend on what level of professionalism one is talking about.
David, in other words, German trade violins would never make it to major orchestras?
If one violinist had a $10,000,000 violin, and 30 others had $30,000 violins, then the average cost would be about $352,000 per violin. What does that tell us? Perhaps a median price would be more informative. Then there's the question of whether you believe a high level professional orchestra violinist really needs to spend $300,000 on their violin. How much of the cost is an "image" thing, not to mention investment potential with depreciation, interest deduction, capital gains, etc. But from a strictly utilitarian perspective, is it necessary?
I think my questions made the thread become a bit political. I'll stop my topic here.
$300k for a major orchestra? I don't think so. The San Francisco Symphony Orchestra owns a Lorenzo Storioni viola that is used by its principal violist. The record auction price for a Storioni viola is $246k.
Matt, I don't think your comment comes across as political, but it just doesn't make sense. In a logical fallacy, you're trying to apply a statement about 'German TRADE violins' to equate to "all German violins." There are excellent German makers whose instruments are played in the best circles, but they are not 'trade' violins by any stretch of the imagination. Trade violins are made in workshops, usually in some type of assembly-line fashion.
In general, regardless of country of origin, workshop violins (trade violins) tend to be priced in the $2k - $5k range. They are typically suitable for students and non-picky amateurs. You may occasionally find a violin of this type that can be used professionally, but it's extremely rare.
Play around on this site. It has tons of unlabelled German fiddles. The really nice sounding ones can be had for less than 5k. Labelled ones like Roth, and Richter go for more. So don't spend more than 5k for an unlabelled German.
Erik, are you giving up playing for woodworking?
Mark and Andrew, I think many of them own very expensive instruments partly because it's an investment vehicle which they can personally relate to.
Andrew, a teacher at a nearby college owned a Strad, and another teacher at a nearby college owned a Carlo Bergonzi. And neither even did much performing.
Fewer and fewer top soloists actually own the Strads or GdG's they're playing on. I have a sneaking suspicion that guys like Kavakos who is filmed visiting the top London violin shop in order to spontaneously fall in love with yet a more exquisite Strad is not really making a purchase, but is rather loaning those instruments in return for the advertising he's doing for Leonhard.
We don't know whether Tony's instrument sounds like a big soloist fiddle, or not. What is his frame of reference? He mentions that he has never played a Strad or Guarneri.
Remember that lots of section players in major orchestras are
"Remember that lots of section players in major orchestras are old. "
300K is indeed a wild guess - it appears to be inflated for any orchestra.
Speaking of nice-sounding instruments, I was listening to random instrumental Xmas music today from some online stream, and a solo violin track came on. Some cover of "white Christmas" or something. Generally violins in recordings don't really catch my attention, but this one had just an amazing tone and color. Exactly my ideal sound for a violin.
Lydia, I'll hazard a guess (hopefully a reasonably well-educated one) and say that the violins in the LSO have a market value of 10% of those in the NY Phil or the Chicago Symphony. Is the LSO in any way inferior in terms of artistry, tone or importance?
I've never heard the LSO live.
I did a quick scattershot look through the bios on about a dozen major US and UK orchestras' websites. Some of the bios list instruments that the players are using. (Admittedly, the vast majority do not.)
I stumbled on this recording of James Ehnes playing Greensleeves on a viola, thought it sound pretty awesome, it's a da Salo viola.
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