All Features articles – Page 2

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    Stradivari violin ‘Benecke’: Unconventional Beauty

    2020-06-16T16:44:00Z

    The 1694 ‘Benecke’ violin is a masterpiece of Stradivari’s ‘Long Pattern’. Andrea Zanrè and Rudolf Hopfner take a look at this exquisite example, detailing its provenance and revealing what CT scans can tell us about its construction

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    Writing a Cadenza: Creativity Unchained

    2020-06-16T15:19:00Z

    Cadenza writing has enjoyed a renewed surge in popularity over recent years. Pauline Harding talks to soloists, teachers and competition jurors about why the trend has been growing, and why more performers should take the plunge

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    Session Report: Different Voices

    2020-06-16T14:05:00Z

    At a recording session for the Dudok Quartet Amsterdam’s latest Haydn release, Peter Quantrill finds an ensemble at ease with themselves, their producer and the exacting process of creating Classical ‘perfection’

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    Alma Moodie: From Praise to Obscurity

    2020-06-16T13:20:00Z

    Australian-born violinist Alma Moodie was a celebrated performer in her day – a protégée of Carl Flesch who collaborated with many leading composers. However, her contribution to the violin canon has been largely forgotten, writes Tatjana Goldberg

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    Vihuela de Arco: Unlocking the secrets of the past

    2020-06-16T12:31:00Z

    A popular instrument of the Middle Ages, the vihuela de arco is only known today from contemporary references and pictures. Javier Martínez explains its significance in the history of bowed instruments, and debunks some of the myths surrounding it

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    Napoleonic Bows: French Connections

    2020-05-20T10:23:00Z

    Several violin, viola and cello bows still survive from the Imperial Court Orchestra of Napoleon III. Gennady Filimonov examines their history, and provides evidence that the so-called ‘Napoleonic-type bows’ originated with the first Emperor rather than the third

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    Sarasate Letters: Beloved Mother

    2020-05-20T10:06:00Z

    During a two-year concert tour of America, violinist Pablo Sarasate corresponded with his adoptive mother Amélie de Lassabathie in Paris. His surviving letters have been translated for the first time into English by Nicholas Sackman and Bastien Terraz, who present a digest of their contents

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    Working with Conductors: Natural Balance

    2020-05-20T09:41:00Z

    When playing a concerto, the string soloist is rarely fully in charge – and working with opinionated conductors means that sometimes disagreements will occur. Charlotte Gardner speaks to three top performers and a conductor to find out how to strike the right balance

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    An Amati Mystery

    2020-05-20T09:13:00Z

    Could the cello shown here be one of the eight ‘bass violins’ ordered by Catherine de’ Medici for the court of Charles IX of France? Luthier Filip Kuijken explores the known history of the instrument and considers whether it could be an original Andrea Amati – or a clever fake ...

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    Tetzlaff Quartet: The Real Beethoven

    2020-05-20T08:58:00Z

    The members of the Tetzlaff Quartet, who recently released their first Beethoven disc, talk to Tom Stewart about what’s really behind the composer’s late quartets, about why they’ve taken a quarter of a century to record any Beethoven – and the challenge of keeping up appearances

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    130th Anniversary: Taking Stock

    2020-04-19T16:45:00Z

    As The Strad celebrates its 130th anniversary this month, stringed instrument expert Philip Kass looks at the future of the industry, while music journalist Charlotte Gardner examines what might be on the cards for players

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    Career in Bloom: Tabea Zimmermann

    2020-04-19T16:44:00Z

    For Tabea Zimmermann, 2020 represents a new flowering in her musical life. Amanda Holloway speaks to the German violist about directing her final Beethoven-Woche, her new recording projects, expanding the viola repertoire and imparting her wisdom to the next generation

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    Luthiers and RSI: Taking the Strain

    2020-04-19T16:43:00Z

    For instrument makers, repetitive strain injuries can mean untold pain and misery – and possibly the end of their career. Luthier Cameron Robertson explains how, with the help of occupational therapist Sara Propes, he adapted his work process to guard against the problems of RSI in the future

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    Music Therapy: A Different Way to Help

    2020-04-19T16:43:00Z

    Music therapy can be a fulfilling profession for any musician looking to make a significant impact in the community. Violinist and music therapist Joy Gravestock outlines the routes to this rewarding career and describes a typical day in the field

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    Baroque Set-up: In a Land without Rules

    2020-04-19T16:43:00Z

    With the growth in popularity of historically informed performance, more players are requesting Baroque-style instruments – but the process of converting an instrument is fraught with uncertainty. Sarah Peck presents an overview of the Baroque set-up process, and corrects some common misconceptions along the way

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    Anne-Sophie Mutter: The Big Picture

    2020-03-04T12:27:00Z

    For Anne-Sophie Mutter, Beethoven’s 250th anniversary is the perfect time for a season of concerts dedicated to his works. The project follows her recent recording collaboration with film composer John Williams – yet as different as the two ventures sound, there is far more that unites than divides them, as ...

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    Lutherie in the Vogtland: Stars of the East

    2020-03-04T12:08:00Z

    The Vogtland in eastern Germany produced some of the country’s least known and most fascinating instrument makers. Rudolf Hopfner and Monika Lustig use CT scans to lift the lid on their unusual construction methods, and show why they should be more widely studied

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    Pöpel and Kurzendörffer: The Mists of Time Demystified

    2020-03-04T11:57:00Z

    Just three Vogtland instruments exist from before 1700. All violas, they were made by two of the founders of the region’s first violin making guild. Klaus Martius  explores what we know about the mysterious Johann Adam Pöpel and Johann Adam Kurzendörffer

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    Academy of St Martin in the Fields at 60: One Big Family

    2020-03-04T11:45:00Z

    The Academy of St Martin in the Fields celebrates its 60th anniversary this season with a 60-CD box set of its celebrated recordings, and tours to Europe and the US. Toby Deller speaks to some of the orchestra’s long-standing string players about working together democratically and the artistic transition ...

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    Session Report: A Voyage of Discovery

    2020-03-04T11:39:00Z

    French composer Benoît Menut’s new concept album of songs and chamber works takes its listeners on a single, continuous journey across the sea. He and cellist Patrick Langot speak to Tom Stewart about the project