US violinist Frank Almond has succeeded in raising more than
$30,000 for his latest recording project. In August, the Milwaukee
Symphony Orchestra’s concertmaster will record works associated
with the 1715 'Lipinski' Stradivari violin, which he has played
Almond used the crowdfunding website Kickstarter to raise the necessary funds, and promoted the project entirely via email, social media and word of mouth. The project reached the target on 20 July, with four days to spare; in the end, the final total was $33,221. According to Almond, of the 182 people backing the project, around 80 per cent were personally unknown to him. The largest single contribution was $8,000.
Almond's planned recording with pianist William Wolfram will include Tartini's 'Devil's Trill' Sonata, a virtuoso solo piece by Karol Lipinski, a violin sonata by Julius Röntgen, and Schumann's Violin Sonata no.2 in D minor, which Almond said was certainly performed by Lipinski with Schumann at the piano. The recording will be released on Avie Records.
Among the violin’s previous players are Joseph Joachim, Giuseppe Tartini and Karol Lipinski. Before it was loaned to Almond in 2008, however, it had not been heard in 20 years; the last person to play it in public was the Estonian violinist Evi Liivak, who died in 1996.