Comment, opinions and reports from The Strad team and leading figures in the string world

Blogs Tuesday, 02 October 2012

The story behind the cover of The Strad’s October issue – part two

Designer Elma Aquino explains how the cover of the October issue took shape after the images had been chosen

Cover linesThe cover lines and position of the text is just as important as the cover image. The following elements had to be included: headline; guest editor Steven Isserlis; standfirst...

Blogs Friday, 28 September 2012

Feel the power

Peter Somerford reflects on measuring violin projection at the Paris blind-test

Rigorous is the first word that springs to mind when summing up yesterday's violin listening test in Paris – the follow-up to the Indianapolis blind-test of two years ago. How else to describe...

Blogs Thursday, 13 September 2012

Beware the impulse to do new stuff

A recent cultural theory backs up violin makers' love of the classics, reports Ariane Todes

In today’s culture, copying is seen in a negative way. Business, politics, consumerism – everything is driven by innovation, the need for new ideas, originality. This was part of the thesis...

Blogs Tuesday, 14 August 2012

Magic realism in Cambridge

Ariane Todes visits a course with practical aims

I always get summer course envy, especially around the time we put together the Summerplus supplement to our January issue, where we list all the exciting things for people to learn and do during the...

Blogs Tuesday, 26 June 2012

Sharing the knowledge

Ariane Todes is impressed by the openness of luthiers at the makers' workshops in Oberlin

String players might know the sleepy little university town of Oberlin, Ohio, for its conservatoire. Little do they know that during the summer months, some of the top violin and bow makers around the...

Blogs Sunday, 17 June 2012

When is a violin not a violin?

Musical museum curators face dilemmas when they display instruments, as Ariane Todes discovers

How do you feel when you see a musical instrument in a case in a museum? Most people feel upset, according to Judith Dehail, as I discovered when I chanced on the annual conference of musical museum...

Blogs Friday, 15 June 2012

Music of the heart

Ariane Todes listens to the children of Harlem’s Opus 118 project

I haven’t seen Music of the Heart, the 1999 film in which Meryl Streep plays a violin teacher struggling to keep open a strings programme in Harlem. But this evening, I watched the real thing ...

Blogs Monday, 11 June 2012

Cultural Learnings from the Big Apple

Ariane Todes sampled a variety of musical offerings last week in New York

Someone just asked me which has the better classical music scene – London or New York. It’s a tough call, but after a month in New York, and on the basis of my outings over the last week...

Blogs Monday, 14 May 2012

The editor in New York: week one

Ariane Todes visits some iconic New York venues

It’s already the end of my first week here in New York, and I’m settling in nicely, working out the difference between uptown and downtown, and learning that asking for ‘warder&rsquo...

Blogs Tuesday, 08 May 2012

The tortoise and the frog

Ariane Todes arrives in the US without her tortoiseshell bow but ready for an American adventure

I’ve arrived in New York at the start of my ten-week US sabbatical, with my violin but without my beloved tortoiseshell-mounted Hill bow. On advice I decided it was too risky to bring it through...

serene violin solo pre-1917
Hi folks. For a story I'm writing I'd like suggestions for the most serene and...
I want to try some new strings on my violin. It's English, 1875, and has quite...
violin left hand position
I have a new student , quite advanced, who has a 'double jointed' left thumb...
Electric violin and bows stolen in London
My friend John Garner's asking for help regarding his electric violin. Please...
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