Did you ever know?.. (p.5)

Legendary Soviet pedagogue Pyotr Stolyarsky died on this day in 1944, April 30 – 69 years ago – aged 73.

He is remembered in history as the founder of ‘The Odessa School’ and ‘The Soviet Violin School”. His famed students included David OistrakhBoris GoldsteinNathan MilsteinIgor Oistrakh, Mikhail Fikhtengoltz and Eduard Grach.


Did you every know, or How a violin works (p.4)

This is a question that all violin makers have asked over the centuries. It is an intriguing question that many people more experienced and knowledgeable than I have pondered and many answers have been presented over the five hundred years the violin has been in existence. How can an instrument so small and delicate produce such a wide variety of tone with such power? Under the fingers of a great player there is no instrument so expressive and so powerful as the violin.


To understand the workings of the violin, we must take a imaginary journey into the sound box. But first let’s talk a little about the wood. Traditionally, the violin is made of maple for the back, sides and neck, and spruce for the top. The spruce is a lighter, softer wood that has a different acoustical pattern than the maple. If the same wood is used, the vibrations tend to cancel each other out and you get a very dead sound. Think of a drum, the top is stiff and light, the body is hard. The same principal applies to a stringed instrument. In carving the top and back (often called plates) of a violin careful attention is given to the graduation or thickness of the wood, often down to a tenth of a millimeter. The top is graduated to about 2.5 mm except around the sound post area . The back is slightly different, thicker in the center and thinning towards the edges, much like a speaker that has a heavy metal center surrounded by thin fibrous material. Both in the violin and the speaker the heavy center creates momentum and movement throughout the entire plate.


The tone of a violin can be so greatly altered by the position of the sound post that in Italian it is called the soul , or anima of the instrument. And this is where adventure begins:


Central Coast Symphony Orchestra - well done!

It was another great orchestral experience this weekend, I’ve been playing with Central Coast Symphony Orchestra (aka Gosford Symphony Orchestra), very tough program, very friendly atmosphere, very friendly audience – and very well done!..

The main theme of the whole evening was ‘confrontation’ of two great composers, Felix Mendelsson and Richard Wagner. Check out our brochure cover, it was just hilarious:



Just cant stop smiling looking at this.   :)))))))

Did you ever know?.. (p.3)

What a nice chart!

Ok, well everyone knows that Stradivari was a violin maker. Someone also knows that Amati was violin maker as well. And the name of Paganini flashes between them – but Paganini was not violin maker at all, he just played violin (which by the way was neither Stradivari or Amati but Guarneri – new name, hah?..)

To settle things down once and forever – look at this chart, and find out who was first on this ‘business’ and who was who’s apprentice or nephew  (click to open in bigger size):