The Everlasting Influence of Stradivarius on the World of Instrument Making

Stradivarius' unparalleled craftsmanship and unique sound continue to inspire contemporary luthiers, making his methods and models timeless in the field of instrument making.

When it comes to violins and cellos, there is one name that stands unrivalled in both fame and historical significance - Antonio Stradivari. Born in the mid-17th century, Stradivarius produced some of the world's most exquisite instruments that, to this day, hold a legendary status in the field of luthiery.

Stradivarius' influence extends far beyond his physical lifetime and continues to have an indelible impact on the world of instrument making. He is often hailed as a trendsetter in the field, a pioneer who transformed how violins are made and sound. Why, though, centuries later, are his methods still so revered and inspirational to modern luthiers? Let's explore the reasons behind his enduring legacy.

Firstly, the craftsmanship of Stradivarius instruments is unparalleled. Each piece that emerged from his workshop in Cremona, Italy, was a perfect blend of art and acoustics. The violins are renowned for their perfect form, selection of fine woods, unique varnish, and their unmatched sound. It is widely believed that Stradivarius' choice of woods, especially the spruce for the top and maple for the back, sides, and neck, contributed significantly to the sound quality of his violins.

The varnish used by Stradivarius has been a topic of study and fascination for many luthiers. While the specific formula of the varnish remains a mystery, it is understood that it played a role in protecting the instrument and possibly influencing its sound. The varnish, coupled with his choice of wood and impeccable craftsmanship, created instruments that projected a rich and powerful sound.

Stradivarius' instruments have an unparalleled sound quality, often described as bright, focused, and capable of sustaining tone. The clarity, depth, and range of the sound that a Stradivarius violin produces are held as the gold standard for other violins. This led to the creation of the 'Stradivari model,' which contemporary luthiers use as a template to strive for the same sound quality.

Modern luthiers often use a Stradivarius instrument as a reference when crafting their pieces. Technological advancements have enabled detailed analysis and 3D imaging of Stradivarius instruments, providing a comprehensive blueprint for their replication. This helps them capture the shape, thickness, and other details of the original models, although the secret of Stradivarius' sound is still an enigma that continues to captivate the world of luthiery.

Further adding to the charm and prestige of the Stradivarius is its scarcity. Stradivarius produced an estimated 1,100 instruments during his lifetime, of which about 650, including violins, cellos, guitars, and harps, survive today. The rarity and historical significance of these instruments have led them to command multimillion-dollar prices at auctions.

Stradivarius' influence continues not only in the crafting of new instruments but also in the world of music. His violins are played by some of the world's greatest violinists, adding a dimension of historical grandeur to their performances.

Violin by Dario Vettori, 2022

Antonio Stradivari
Violin by Dario Vettori, 2022
£ 22,000 GBP

This Italian violin by Dario Vettori, made in Florence in 2022, not only looks stunning, but also produces a consistent, powerful, and brilliant sound throughout all registers. When played, this violin delivers a tonal quality that is rich, clear, and balanced, with a robust projection that can fill any concert hall. Musicians who play this violin can expect to experience a wide dynamic range and a warm, resonant tone that is ideal for both solo and orchestral performances. Overall, Dario Vettori's violin-making skills have brought about a masterpiece that is a joy to play and listen to. The violin is a testament to the artistry and dedication that goes into making a top-quality instrument, a hallmark of the Vettori family name.


Dario Vettori

Violin by Dario Vettori, 2022

Dario II began practicing violin craftsmanship early on, learning the trade from his family's workshop in Italy. At the age of eighteen, he joined his father's workshop and later enrolled at the Associazione Liutaria Italiana Professionisti in 2001 to further his education. Dario II also gained extensive experience working in violin-making workshops in the United States, including those in New York, Washington DC, and Texas. He follows the same models used in his father's workshop to construct his instruments, utilizing Bosnian and local maple wood, as well as the last remaining supplies from his grandfather. In addition to the traditional spruce from the Val di Fiemme, he occasionally uses wood that originates from 17th-century trees, as determined by analyses conducted at the University of Tuscia in Viterbo. Dario II is an accomplished musician who performs in several chamber groups, including the Anonimo Fiorentino Orchestra, the Desiderio da Settignano Orchestra, and the Giovanile del Veneto Orchestra, with which he has toured abroad.

Violin by Marc Paquin, 2022 Stradivarius Model

Violin by Marc Paquin, 2022 Stradivarius Model
£ 20,000 GBP

This violin is a warm and powerful instrument that boasts excellent projection and resonance. Handcrafted by Marc Paquin himself, a master luthier who discovered his passion for violin making in 2000, this violin is a true work of art. Paquin honed his skills under the tutelage of the world-renowned Philippe Girardin and Sylvain Rusticoni, and further refined his knowledge through restoration courses with Jean-Jacques Fasnacht. With over a decade of research into sound, power, timbre, and playability, this violin is a testament to Paquin's expertise and dedication to his craft. Today, Marc Paquin violins are played by professionals and international soloists all over the world, from Spain to Australia.


Marc Paquin

Violin by Marc Paquin, 2022 Stradivarius Model

Marc Paquin discovered in 2000 his passion for violin making. He had the great chance to learn in Switzerland with Philippe Girardin and Sylvain Rusticoni, winners of gold medals in Cremona and in the United-States. He also followed restoration courses with Jean-Jacques Fasnacht.

Since 2006 Marc Paquin has been investigating on his own about sound, power, timbre and playability of string instruments. They are nowadays being played all around the world by professionals and international soloists, such as Sergey Malov, Leticia Moreno, Jean-Jacques Kantorow, Tatiana Samouil, Sungsic Yang,… in Spain, England, Switzerland, France, Germany, Belgium, Holland, Austria, USA, Canada, Korea, China, Australia,…

Violin by Lucas Fabro, 2018

Antonio Stradivarius
Violin by Lucas Fabro, 2018
£ 13,000 GBP

Made entirely by hand in Lucas Fabro’s private workshop in Cremona, the violin was made using only the best, traditional and highly-acclaimed Cremonese techniques. Thus, the instrument plays with ease, freedom and sweetness, not to mention the power expected of the best instruments of the Italian school of violin-making. It responds very quickly and will project extremely well in any concert hall. The low end is rich and dark and the top end is powerful all while retaining the precision of old Italian instruments. This violin is sure to please the professional player at any level, whether they play in orchestra, chamber music or solo. The violin comes certified from the Luthier.


Lucas Fabro

Violin by Lucas Fabro, 2018

I take pride in understanding all the technical processes which go into creating a great violin and usually make around 8 a year. I know the whereabouts of most of my instruments and get to see them from time to time as the musicians who commission them often become friends.

Stradivarius Model Violin by Edgar Russ, Cremona 2013

Stradivarius Model Violin by Edgar Russ, Cremona 2013
£ 31,000 GBP

Edgar enjoys a reputation as one of the most established and innovative makers in Cremona. This Stradivarius model violin has been previously owned by a concertmaster of a Swiss orchestra for many years. Best suited for a player looking for quality and projection across all strings. The response is immediate and the sound is very focused and powerful. Truly one to try in person!


Edgar Russ

Stradivarius Model Violin by Edgar Russ, Cremona 2013

Thanks to 35 years of experience and the best violin making education, you will see and hear the perfect harmony of skill and artistic sensibility in all of luthier Edgar Russ’ works.

About the Author

MyLuthier was started by two friends while they were studying at the Royal Academy of Music in London. The idea was to provide musicians with exceptional instruments at a price they can afford. We travelled Europe in search for the best contemporary makers and we’re proud of our selection and the partnerships we’ve developed.

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