Anyone who looks at this website regularly will know that we are big fans of the Prague makers. The Špidlen family is probably the most important dynasty, spanning four generations. This violin by Otakar Špidlen is a lovely del Gesu copy in near mint condition.
We feel increasingly that 20th century Prague violins are the best option for talented young musicians. They regularly outplay contemporary Italian instruments selling for 5 or 10 times the price, they exhibit individuality in construction while respecting the classical tradition, and the workmanship is always faultless.
This violin illustrates these points beautifully – it’s a lovely del Gesu copy free from the affectations of antiqueing, confident and bold in execution.
The condition is excellent with no cracks or damages. There is some wear to the varnish on the back, and the right table edge has had a bit of retouch that doesn’t quite match in colour.
This is a strong and bright sounding violin with a clear projecting sound. It’s quite uncompromising, and it would be best suited to someone with a developed technique. The upper strings are superb – broad in palette, very powerful and solistic, but without harshness.
In terms of response it’s on the stiff side, and you can play with a lot of bow pressure very close to the bridge. It’s an ideal instruemnt for the big concerto repertoire – not for the faint-hearted, but very rewarding if you’re prepared to play it hard!
Dimensions: length of back 35.4cm, stop 132/195mm
Certificate: Jan B Špidlen, Pague 2018
Click or tap an image to enlarge it. Click or tap again to supersize.
Interested in this Otakar F Špidlen Violin?
Look at other violins in this price range.