EA Ouchard is probably the greatest of 20th century French makers, and this is a lovely example in silver. Made for Georges Coné in Lyon, it’s in excellent condition and a spectacular player as you’d expect from this maker.

By reason of his massive output, Sartory has achieved more name recognition than any other 20th century maker, but I rate EA Ouchard more highly. A tireless experimenter and a great stylist, his bows are just more exciting!

Here we have a silver mounted example dating from his first period working independently from his father. The stick is of round section orange-brown pernambuco with a broad figure – very nice wood. Mounts are silver and ebony. The condition is generally excellent – there’s some thumbnail wear and a small amount of wear to the thumb projection, otherwise no issues.

This is most definitely a modern bow, with a strong spring and great resistance, but it’s also more subtle and sophisticated than many bows by this maker. Overall, EA Ouchard’s earliest work seems to be the best from a musician’s point of view, and his later sticks can be unwieldy.

To my mind this bow is an ideal combination of power and delicacy – resistant and crisp, yet supple enough to feel friendly.

The sound is big, immediate and clear and the stick is positive and articulate. This is a firm bow but with a nice give in the middle, excellent grip and very good definition. It does everything well, it’s steady as a rock on and off the string.

Overall, a typically well rounded example from this maker.

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