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Music in the making. Produced by Millikan university under a grant from the Educational Television and Radio Center in cooperation with the National Association of educational broadcasters. We were in the studio. Professor Clyde Hess chairman of Millikan's violin department for the purpose of talking with them on recording about the history of string instruments. He was surrounded by an assortment of violins and bows. Mr. Hayes I'd like to learn more about that intriguing violin of yours. But yeah just some questions and maybe even illustrate a little. I'd be glad to Jerry. Well let's start with the bowl. I see you have three boys there and they all look about the same to me. Are they different in some way. This one is an ordinary bowl with only about $50. Then this an exam. This however is a France watch toit finest made and the cheapest one is fifty dollars.
Where would you play if you made yours with each of these three bows. So you start with the ordinary one and work up to the finest one and see if I can tell a different class. Do you listen carefully.
Will the ball really seems to make a lot of difference in the tone quality of a violin. It's a world of difference Jerry and the boy you know has a very interesting history. The early boys were short and curved outward like a boy of archery. They were so crude and heavy and it was a major operation to adjust the tension on them which I might add is a very important and necessary adjustment for a violinist. Well this fellow you spoke of a few moments ago friends who want to hear it. When did he know he lived in the 18th century. The modern boat. Well it's very beginning to him. The length of the board which was he determined to be twenty nine and a half inches. A Fine Balance his choice award Bennett being Pernambuco wood and the adjusting making as we call of all of these improvements were the work of Francoise toward a lot of magic in his bows are pretty
expensive Today them who are right here are very right. I've seen them listed as high as forty five hundred dollars. No other boys like like a torch you know. Well they must be the best. So what is the difference in the bows again. After hearing a difference in price I'm sure I can appreciate it even more surely.
That still made her you know something with an exhibit to it.
Well that's much better because there has not I the friends want to it. WOO WOO WOO WOO.
Never again will I underestimate the importance of a good bow. Well now about the instrument itself. Can you tell me who invented the violin violin wasn't invented by any one individual Jerry. The first ones were made during the sixteenth century. That's when the sheep of the vine as we know it today was determined. Also the numbers trainees was decided upon to be four in form. Well that makes it well over 400 years old and still I think one of the most expressive of all musical instruments. But today whenever people talk about violin was the name Stradivari comes up. Was he the greatest violin maker. Well Jerry that's of course a matter of opinion. Much could be said about Stradivari. He was fortunate in many ways. Try to live at a time when he followed the great kimono makers who had been making violins for hundred
years a family father and son improving the instruments little by little and Stradivari studied with the greatest of a nickel on my and carried on from where Nic finished his work. Naturally he made wonderful violin. He made violins over a period of time longer than any other system that ever lived here for 17 years he made and. Well other any violins that you liked better than his own. Well personally I prefer the thought of the joys of dull days ago I marry that name isn't as familiar as Stradivarius but I suppose that's because Stradivari maybe made more violins. But what are your reasons for preferring one of his instruments. You remember what I said about strata following the work of his teacher Nikolai Martin. Well one area on the other hand turned back to the early Fiat model. I'm a genie
and acquired an entirely different result from that of Stradivari and lead violinist daubers balling summed up the difference for me once he called is going to marry the mail because it gave him the impression of strength and power. He held up the Stradivarius violin and called the female. Why. Because it is there and look much more delicate in comparison. Well then each one is superior in it in its own way then that's exactly right. Well we've heard about the two best violins made and each just as about as different as can be from the other in tone. There certainly must be a quite a wide variation in the quality of all those violins that are made today. Do you have a cheaper violin with you here in the studio. Yes I have a student violin here. Well then could we make that ear test again this time with the violins. If it weren't for the Bose it should work even better for the instruments themselves. When you play a short piece for us
on the cheaper violin I well that you won't like it. Well that's really quite enough on that one Mr. Harris. Now I think the best way for us to close the program is for you to play our whole composition as it really should be played on your fine violin.
Why. Professor Klein has been talking with us on recording about the history of string instruments and has played a number of musical illustration. Music in the making was produced by Millikan university under a grant from the Educational Television and Radio Center. This program is distributed by the National Association of educational broadcasters.
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Music in the making
History of string instruments
Producing Organization
Millikin University
Contributing Organization
University of Maryland (College Park, Maryland)
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Episode Description
Professor Clyde Hess talks about this history of stringed instruments, with a focus on the violin.
Series Description
Instructional comments and musical illustrations using faculty and students from the Millikin University School of Music. The first thirteen programs in the series focus upon historical aspects of music. The second half of the series explores music's technical side.
Broadcast Date
Violin bows
Media type
Producing Organization: Millikin University
Speaker: Hess, Clyde
AAPB Contributor Holdings
University of Maryland
Identifier: 56-8-12 (National Association of Educational Broadcasters)
Format: 1/4 inch audio tape
Duration: 00:14:00?
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Chicago: “Music in the making; History of string instruments,” 1956-01-01, University of Maryland, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC, accessed February 6, 2023,
MLA: “Music in the making; History of string instruments.” 1956-01-01. University of Maryland, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC. Web. February 6, 2023. <>.
APA: Music in the making; History of string instruments. Boston, MA: University of Maryland, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC. Retrieved from