giovedì 29 ottobre 2009

The Strad Articles, october 2005 - Cesare Candi's viola d'amore (1931)

The Strad Articles

Cesare Candi's viola d'amore

The Strad - october 2005Cesare Candi settled in Genova after training with Raffaele Fiorini in Bologna and today he is considered the master of that school. His decorated instruments, which he made alongside violins, violas and cellos throughout his career, attest to an uncommon ability in carving and engraving.

The ‘f-holes’ of this ten-string viola d’amore are outlined with ebony and ivory, and the ivory rosette is set in a circle of thin, inlaid whalebone purfling. Candi’s usual purfling, three stripes of stained brown maple, can be seen around the instrument border.

The scroll is adorned with carved ebony embossed with ivory pearls descending to the edge of the pegbox, and the chamfer and button are covered with whalebone. It is crowned with a blindfolded cupid, carved from ivory and modelled on the the maker’s nephew, Corrado.

The StradThe resonant strings can be accessed via a delicate, hinged coverplate of ebony inlaid with ivory, fastened with a tiny ivory screw. The interior blocks and cornerblock linings are of spruce, as in many of Candi’s instruments, and both plates are branded C. CANDI-GENOVA.

This instrument was not intended to mimic the golden age of the Baroque, but was a fantasy born directly from Candi’s hands and a fine example of Art Nouveau in violin making.

He died at his workbench on 29 September 1947.

  • Name: Cesare Candi
  • Nationality: Italian
  • Born: Bologna, 1869
  • Died: Genova, 1947
  • Instrument: Viola d’amore
  • Date: Genova, 1931
  • Label text: Cesare Candi / Fece in
    Genova l'Anno 1931

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martedì 27 ottobre 2009

Viola D’Amore

I had a wonderful conversation with a woman with whom I will be working later this summer. She was telling me about some unusual string instruments that she has seen.

In searching for some of the instruments that she mentioned, I came upon the Viola D’Amore.

This is an instrument that goes back at least as far as the 17th Century, but was most popular in the 18th. It has had many incarnations in its life, but in its most recent iteration it boasts 14 strings. You only play 7 of them. The other 7 are sympathetic strings below the fingerboard, that ring out when you play.

The result is beautiful and haunting. Treat yourself to the video below ofThomas Georgi playing a one-minute snip from Vivaldi’s D major Concerto. Good choice, since the instrument is most commonly tuned to a D chord.

domenica 11 ottobre 2009

from the past

The German Association for Early Music in 1906. Christian Döbereiner founded this organisation.
Here he is shown with a seven-string German viola da gamba.
Stra Li Stadelmann (harpsichord), Antonio Huber (viola d'amore)

Viola d'amore di Marcello Ive (1985) su modello stradivariano

giovedì 1 ottobre 2009