This post originally appeared on the ‘fiddlefish.com’ blog. It’s here for archival purposes only.
I grew up playing on fine violins. I probably took for granted just how special they were, but in hindsight, those instruments were all I knew. Recently, it really became apparent that fine instruments have predominantly slipped from the hands of players as their price has inflated well beyond the salaries of the average musician. This is not news, per se, but it really put a fire in my belly to figure out a way to get something nice under my chin again.
I don’t think that owning something so fine is a birth-right, nor do I take for granted the reasons why Stradivarius (Strad) and Guarneri (Del Gesu) violins sit in vaults — rather than being played. Nonetheless, I can’t think of any reason why I should not be striving to raise funds to own one myself.
This blog could span a lifetime, in all honestly. Strads and Del Gesus are pricy pieces of art. A talented painter may never own a Picasso, yes, but violins are tools of a player’s trade and it would be a mistake to say that they weren’t intended for us and our listeners. How do I expect to raise cash to purchase one? I don’t know. It will be quite an adventure — but I am determined to try.