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  • Writer's picturemarcoosioliutaio

The Age-Old Challenge Between Stradivari and Guarneri: A Modern Journey in Violin Making

Directly from Cremona, the heart of world violin making, I recently had the honor of partaking in a historical rivalry between two greatests of the field: Stradivari and Guarneri. This time, I brought the challenge into a modern context with two of my instruments, inspired by the Stradivari 1716 Oppenheim and the Guarneri del Gesù 1743 Ex Brusilow models. 

The creation of these two violins was a profoundly enriching experience, balancing respect for tradition with innovation. In every step of their crafting, I felt a dialogue with the masters of the past. True to my philosophy, I avoided antiquing, focusing instead on the purity of sound and contemporary aesthetics.

A fascinating aspect of new instruments is their sound evolution. Contrary to popular belief, a violin doesn't come with its final sound. It's like a living entity that matures and enriches with time and practice. The wood and varnish adapt, and the sound evolves from initial brightness to expressive maturity.

The acoustic comparison in my video highlighted the unique qualities of each model. The Stradivari shines for its clarity and brightness, especially in the higher registers. The Guarneri, on the other hand, captivates with its tonal richness and emphasis on lower tones. The varying audience reactions underscored how music touches each of us uniquely. 

The feedback provided intriguing insights. Many expressed a clear preference for the deeper tone of the Guarneri, while others found the potential of the Stradivari particularly promising. It was a clear demonstration of how music can strike different chords with each listener. 

Sharing this experience from my atelier in Cremona has been a journey of discovery and confirmation of the inseparable bond between craftsman, instrument, and musician. I invite you to watch the video if you haven't already, and join the conversation on my blog or social media. The journey in violin making is an endless path, and each step is a new melody to be discovered.



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