I am a dangerous person to be around, in that I am given to violins. The one I play most often is a run-of-the mill Suzuki:

Suzuki Violin

My other one, that Rhiannon has been picking up the rudiments on, is something else.  Inscribed inside is

                                         ‘JOANNES BAPTISTA GUADAGNINI

                                                PLACENTINTUS MEDIALANI 1′

Guadarini Violin

‘Guadagnini?’ So what?

Only, that research tells one that he was one of the top three luthiers in the world.

‘Giovanni Battista Guadagnini (often shortened to G. B. Guadagnini; 23 June 1711 – 18 September 1786) was an Italian luthier, regarded as one of the finest craftsmen of string instruments in history. He is widely considered the third greatest maker after Antonio Stradivari and Giuseppe Guarneri “del Gesù”.’

World famous violinist David Garrett (b David Bogartz 4/9/80 Aachen, Germany) noted for holding the Guinnes world record in playing ‘Flight of the Bumblebee’ in 1 min 5.2 seconds 2015, had a love affair with a Guadagnini. He had been playing a borrowed Strad when he was offered the Guadagnini for the best part of one million pounds sterling. Regarding it as better than the Strad, he took out a loan and for a number of years a large part of every booking fee went to repaying it. It was finally his in December 2007.

Two weeks later, after a concert at the Barbican in London, he strapped the flimsy violin case onto his back and went to meet his brother, sister and parents in the car park. The steps were wet due to rain, and he went down the full flight on his back. The violin and case were crushed but saved him from injury. The horror of the loss was so great that he simply sat there for fifteen minutes, unable even to cry.

Eventually he was entranced by a Strad, even better than the Guadagnini, and that is now the violin played by him.

© February 2020 Colonialist

About colonialist

Active septic geranium who plays with words writing fantasy novels and professionally editing, with notes writing classical music, and with riding a mountain bike, horses and dinghies. Recently Indie Publishing has been added to this list.
This entry was posted in Africa, Colonialist, Daughters, Music, Personal Journal. Bookmark the permalink.


  1. gipsika says:

    I didn’t know that bit about Garrett. Incredible. He wouldn’t be the first famous musician to total a top-end instrument though.


  2. Lizzie Ross says:

    Eek — worst nightmare scenario! Worse than tales of musicians leaving their instruments in taxis (those usually find their way back to the owners).


  3. What a way to go! 😳 My sister took up the violin and almost drove us insane incessantly squeaking out ‘The Bluebells Of Scotland’. I hope that young R progresses well.


  4. Widdershins says:

    The more expensive a thing is the more determined the universe is to reduce it to toothplcks. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  5. SueW says:

    I hope it was insured!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. This is an interesting post. My younger son learned the violin for a year before giving it up and changing to the piano and now the drums.

    Liked by 1 person

You have the right to remain silent - but please don't!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s