Rodolfo Fredi is one of the leading makers of the Roman school, along with Sgarbi, Rossi, Sannino, and Politi. His violins are highly regarded for their tonal qualities – Marlin Brinser’s “Dictionary of 20th Century Italian Violin Makers” awards him 3 stars, the highest accolade. This is a Strad model instrument with a spectacular oil varnish, made with beautifully quilted maple. Judging from the label, this was obvoiously a special commission for a valued client, a M. Joseph Dagano – one assumes from the fact that the label is in French that Dagano was also French!
The condition is outstanding, with no cracks or damages and only minor wear to the varnish.
It’s hard to overestimate the qualities of this violin – it’s loud, clear and projecting but also very musical, with a lightning response and a great dynamic range. The sound is bright and silvery in overall character, and yet in no way harsh – it succeeds in being focused and penetrating without bringing anything unpleasant into the picture. It’s also very pliable – there’s a lot of wood in the core sound, and even with all that high frequency content it always sounds warm and sweet. But its greatest asset is its ability to produce a great tone at a whisper or a roar – it’s impossible to overplay this violin!
This is a first class instrument suitable for a soloist – in fact the only thing that would sound better would be a Strad …
Length of back 35.4cm, stop 131/195mm
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