Showing 49–63 of 63 results
B889 William Edward Smith, Wetherby, England 1905
This handsome viola has a strongly figured back and a warm, red-brown oil varnish. With a resonant, characterful tone, this instrument would be excellent for an advanced student or budding professional.
S310 “Peter Madill”, Five-String Violin, Auckland, New Zealand, 1981$ 7,000.00
Five-string violins, especially those custom-made as such, are very rare, and a real delight to play in a non-classical context, once the initial adjustment to having a low C string as well as an E string are made. This violin was made for Cath Newhook, who used it for a number of years in her country band “Gentle Annie”. It has been fitted with a Zeta five-string electric bridge and tailpiece, with a mini-jack plug fitting on the latter. This would be a great fiddle for adventurous explorers of the folk, country, blues or rock soundscapes.
S261 Labelled “Bergonzi”, China, 2007$ 7,750.00
In the decade following the year 2000, a number of well-made violins and cellos were imported into New Zealand from China under the trade name “Bergonzi”. This cello is a typical example, finished with a warm, dark brown, spirit-based varnish, which complements the strikingly-flamed maple back, ribs and neck on the back. The workmanship of the edges and other details is crisp and assured. The instrument is responsive and balanced across all four strings; the A and D strings are particularly resonant.
S316 “Thomas Warren” #19, New Zealand, 1981$ 9,000.00
For much of the late 20th century, Tom Warren was one of the most prominent and prolific violin makers in New Zealand. His instruments, made with exquisite craftsmanship, have been owned by many professional players, and his copies of Stradivari’s decorated violins, notably the “Hellier”, are stunningly executed. This violin is relatively early but is made with the same precision and elegance as any of his later instruments. It has a clear, even tone, with strength in the upper registers. The varnish is a warm brown-red colour, the scroll edges picked out in black in the French Stradivari style, in keeping with the cleanly cut edge work.
S234, Viola, “Malcolm Collins”, #20, Upper Hutt, New Zealand, 1985
This is a relatively early viola by esteemed Upper Hutt violin maker Malcolm Collins – last year (2014) Malcolm made viola #60. A viola player himself, Malcolm has always been eager to keep his violas within a manageable size while enhancing depth and richness of tone. To this end, he favours a medium body size, broad bouts and deep ribs. The workmanship of this instrument is exquisite, as ever, and the pale gold varnish enhances the wood without hiding any detail.
S223 violin, Zhu Hua Jie, Shanghai, China, 1994$ 10,000.00
Zhu Hua Jie made this strongly-modelled violn, with its bold edges and beautifully flamed maple back, in 1994, two years after winning a silver medal for tone at the 1992 Violin Society of America International Competition in Carlisle, Pennsylvania. The tone of this instrument is strong, brilliant, and would suit an experienced player. The pegs, tailpiece, and endpin are elaborately carved from genuine boxwood.
S236, 4/4 Violin, “Huai Li Ming”, Auckland, NZ, 1996$ 10,000.00
Huai Li Ming came to New Zealand in the early 1990’s, working first for Noel Sweetman before joining the Stringed Instrument Company workshop for two years. This violin was made not long after he established his own workshop, and is typical of his instruments from this period. The violin has an immediate, almost explosive response – playing it is rather like riding a pedigree race horse and can promise an exhilarating experience for those wanting a dynamic, exciting sound. Not for the faint-hearted.
S291 Adrian Studer, Nelson, New Zealand, 1998$ 10,000.00
Adrian Studer trained at the Swiss Violin Making School in Brienz, and came to New Zealand in the 1980’s. This violin is a fine example of his work, modelled on an instrument by Lorenzo Storioni. The varnish is a golden orange-red colour, finished with subtle craquillure and antiquing work. The tone is full and even, with good resonance in all positions. The violin has been played by a professional musician, and would be very suitable for a serious student or young career violinist.
S329 Malcolm Collins, #36, Upper Hutt, New Zealand, 1992$ 11,000.00
Malcolm Collins is one of New Zealand’s most prolific and successful violin, viola and cello makers. As a viola player himself, he has a particular soft spot for this instrument and has made 65 violas over the last four decades. He has always used a good-quality and very enduring oil varnish; this viola, in contrast to earlier pale-coloured instruments, is one of the first where he introduced colour into the varnish layers. Like all his instruments, this has a rich, characterful sound across all four strings.
B955 “Officina Claudio Monteverde” oversigned “Gio Maria Ceruti”, Cremona 1923$ 12,000.00
The Cremona workshop “Officina Claudio Monteverde” was established by Aristide Cavalli in 1880. “Gio Maria Ceruti” denoted one of their models rather than having any attachment to the famous family of violin makers by that name. The instrument is handmade however, with some attention to detail, though lacking the rather exaggerated delicacy of the “Aristide Cavalli” model. The tone is rich and warm in the lower strings, with a clear, open E string.
S328 Anthony Elmsly viola$ 12,000.00
A 2016 instrument by specialist viola maker Anthony Elmsly. With a body length of 41.3cm (41.6 over the arch) this is a classic, manageably sized instrument, with the design based on some of the most successful alto sized models in history; the much copied “Conte Vitale” and “Primrose” violas by Andrea Guarneri. The sound of this instrument is strong and even across the range.
S283 Antonio Strings ASLH # 605 cello and GEWA hard case$ 13,880.00
The “LH” of this cello’s instrument code stands for Ling Hua, or (in full) Zhenghua Ling. Zhenghua is a highly successful Shanghai maker who has won two prizes in the Violin Society of America competition for his own violins. He used his success to move away from mass production of cheap instruments and focus his now-much-smaller manufacturing workshop on making good-quality student and professional instruments.
The maple and spruce used in the #605 cello series is sourced in Europe, and the golden-orange varnish is based on a Northern Italian recipe. The maple in this cello has a light but attractive flame, and the spruce has a fairly open grain. The workmanship is very good and the cello has a strong, projecting tone suitable for advanced student performance.
B918 Adrian Studer, Nelson 1990$ 14,000.00
It isn’t often we feature the owner of an instrument but this viola and its player have played such an important role in Dunedin’s musical life we feel the following biography needs no apology. Jack Speirs studied composition, music history, conducting, violin and viola in Edinburgh and Berlin before taking up a lectureship in music at the University of Otago in 1965. He was well-known as a violin and viola teacher, composer, orchestral and chamber music player, and soloist. He was musical director of the Dunedin Civic orchestra, now the Southern Sinfonia, for 15 years. This viola has a rich, warm, clear sound with a strong, projecting bass. As with all Studer’s instruments it is beautifully made.
S333 Edward Burr, Wellington, New Zealand 1927$ 15,000.00
Edward Burr was New Zealand’s first professional full-time luthier, setting up his workshop in Wellington in 1921 and producing over 155 instruments before his death in 1938. He had made well over 100 violins before he embarked on his first cellos in 1927, but made up for lost time by producing four of them in the space of a year. The wood is well-chosen: the back and ribs have a narrow, light flame and the neck and scroll are particularly handsome, with a strong narrow flame which is enhanced by the golden brown varnish used over the whole instrument. This would be an excellent instrument for a talented and advancing student.
B990 Noel Sweetman, #17, Cambridge, New Zealand, 1996$ 22,000.00
This is a very representative example of Noel Sweetman’s work of that period, during which he made a number of cellos on this large Stradivari model. The varnish is a warm golden brown colour and the maple of the back has a very narrow, regular, attractive flame. The workmanship is very good, and the tone is clear and projects well. This instrument would be suitable for an advanced student or a young professional player.