Editor's pick



Do different rosin brands actually perform differently? We put 7 to the test


The Strad’s editor Charlotte Smith and contributing editor Pauline Harding put seven rosins to the test and discover a world of difference between brand and type



Pickup or microphone? Choosing what's right for your bowed string instrument


With such a variety of electronic pickups, microphones and now hybrid systems on the market, finding the perfect amplification solution isn’t always easy. Kimon Daltas considers the options

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‘If I want the bigger Sibelius symphonies in my life, the Bruckners and Mahlers, then I am going to have to learn to conduct’
Adventurous violinist Pekka Kuusisto talks to Andrew Mellor about his predilection for finding new challenges – including a recent shift to the conductor’s podium.

‘The presence of Calcium soap on the “Spagnoletti” indicates the use of a lubricant’
Giacomo Fiocco reports on a recent study of a trio of Guarneri ‘del Gesù’ instruments, examining everything from the varnish composition to the f-hole design.

‘I had never quite prepared for my musical performances in the way that I had for my sports matches.’
Taking inspiration from sports science, Berenice Beverley Zammit reports on how string players can physically prepare themselves for peak performance.

‘What appealed to me most was this viola’s soft quality. This was the sound through which I wanted to express myself’
Violist Hélène Clément tells Carlos María Solare about her latest recording of works by two accomplished viola players: Frank Bridge and Benjamin Britten.

‘It is fascinating that the frog shares some of the distinctive features of the head.’
Richard Morency identifies some of Eugène Sartory’s. working methods through a detailed examination of one of his middle-period bows

‘I don’t know where I’d be without yoga. The better my body is working, the more efficient I can be’
Multifaceted violinist Elena Urioste talks with Toby Deller about everything from yoga to starting up her own festival.



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    Making a carbon fibre bow in 10 steps – photo story


    Founded in 1999, Arcus has developed a reputation for making lightweight, durable bows from non-traditional materials. Company director Bernd Müsing explains how a composite bow is made, from initial design to first hair fitting

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    Advances in string manufacture: the latest developments


    There are hundreds of strings available on the market already, and new releases seem never ending. But just why are these developments happening, how necessary are they, and how are musicians involved in that process? Pauline Harding asks string manufacturers and testers worldwide

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    Protection and portability: five of our favourite violin cases reviewed


    The number of instrument cases available can make finding your perfect partner a daunting process. Charlotte Smith takes five cases by leading manufacturers BAM, For-Tune, Gewa, Musafia and Negri on the road to test security, mobility and the range of features available

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