In the April 2023 edition of The Strad, violinist Carolin Widmann talks about her late discovery of Benjamin Britten’s Violin Concerto. ‘I learnt it very late in life, actually only about three years ago,’ she says. ‘It’s a bit of an enigma. I think we Germans can be a bit arrogant about repertoire, and we tend to have a very German-centred idea about pieces. I don’t remember anyone ever playing the Britten Concerto. But when I was finally asked to play it, I was blown away. I thought: “How could that have escaped me for so long?”’

Performances were scheduled for a tour in the Netherlands in March 2020, which, Widmann explains, collapsed concert by concert as Covid restrictions began to bite. She finally toured the piece in the Netherlands last autumn, followed by performances in Hanover, Frankfurt and Belgrade, with a concert in Chemnitz in mid-April. ‘It was really like a liberation, and it meant that the pandemic is over. For me, the Britten is an absolute discovery and a masterpiece. It’s astonishing at my age to discover something so amazing.’

Watch Carolin Widmann perform Britten’s Violin Concerto with Hugh Wolff conducting the Frankfurt Radio Symphony at the Alte Oper Frankfurt, Germany, on 10 February 2023.


Best of Technique

In The Best of Technique you’ll discover the top playing tips of the world’s leading string players and teachers. It’s packed full of exercises for students, plus examples from the standard repertoire to show you how to integrate the technique into your playing.


The Strad’s Masterclass series brings together the finest string players with some of the greatest string works ever written. Always one of our most popular sections, Masterclass has been an invaluable aid to aspiring soloists, chamber musicians and string teachers since the 1990s.


This year’s calendar celebrates the top instruments played by members of the Australian Chamber Orchestra, Melbourne Symphony, Australian String Quartet and some of the country’s greatest soloists.