Kelvin Scott Wins Bronze Medal for Violin in the 2009 12th International Triennale Competition in Cremona, Italy.
The Triennale competition, known as the "Olympics of Violin making," rolled around in the fall of 2009. I dearly love this competition as it provides makers with an opportunity to submit instruments which embody the purest and most refined expression of their work as contemporary makers.
I dropped off my two entries, one violin and one viola, and then traveled up to Scotland to await the results. To my delight and surprise, my violin, an instrument modeled on a fine 1717 A. Stradivari, was awarded the bronze medal. I hurried back to Cremona for the awards ceremony, where for me the high point of the evening at the Ponchielli Theatre was when the soloist Bin Huang selected my violin to perform Sarasate's "Zigeunerweisen."
As always, it was very nice to walk the streets of Cremona and to let one's mind inevitably drift to earlier times and the great history the place.
I am very grateful also to all of my friends in Cremona who made my stay and participation in this competition so enjoyable.
Photo Essay Depicting the Making of my Most Recent Cello.
During the winter of 2008, a client contacted me regarding her wish to have me make her a new cello. She was looking for an instrument that would have a versatile, deep tone, but also an instrument at would be suitable for a smaller woman.
Having previously made cellos ranging from large Matteo Goffriller models on one end of the size spectrum to 7/8-sized "Ladies' Cellos" on the other, I thought it was time to develop a cello model of my own that retained the desirable tonal characteristics of larger instruments, but incorporated some of the more playable features of smaller instruments.
I began the making of this cello in the fall of 2009 and its making bridged over into winter of 2010. I decided to photograph to process of making this instrument, and the resulting photo essay represents a series of small pinhole-like glimpses into the rich experience of making a fine cello.
In November of 2008 in Portland Oregon, the 18th international VSA competition was held. Once again, I submitted a Quartet of instrument to the competition. The quartet this time was composed of a large Matteo Goffriller Cello, a Gasparo da Salo viola, and an Ex-Stern del Gesu and a Ex-Sauret Del Gesu. At the Awards banquet, I was very pleased to find out that my violin, the Ex-Sauret, had won a Silver medal for violin Tone.
In addition, my viola received a certificate of merit for tone, and my Quartet of instruments also received a certificate of merit for tone.
The event in Portland was once again a super event, and the Saturday viewing of hundreds of competition violins, violas, and cellos represents a rare opportunity for players and makers to survey the full breadth of what is happening in the world of contemporary violinmaking.
Repeat Gold Medal for Viola....
In the fall of 2006 I was fortunate to repeat my performance of 2004 with the winning of a Gold medal for my Viola entry. This viola was based on the work of Gasparo Da Salo.
At the same event in Baltimore, my Forma B Stradivari Cello received a silver Medal for Tone. My quartet of instruments, which was comprised of a Stradivari Cello, a Gasparo Bertolotti 16 3/8" viola, and two Guarneri Del Gesu violins, a 1734 Ex-Huberman and a 1738 Ex-Kemp del Gesu also was privileged to win a silver medal for tone. While not a typical matching of instruments for a maker's quartet, ultimately this group of instruments, all of which were characterized by a darker, complicated tone, ended up blending well to form a strong ensemble.
As always I am very grateful to the VSA for staging these competitions, as they are one of the great meeting times for violinmakers from around the world to share ideas, compare making styles, and compete.
|Triennale Bronze for Viola!
In the October of 2006, I was very fortunate to be awarded a Bronze Medal for Viola, at the 11th International Triennale competition of string instruments "A. Stradivari" in Cremona, Italy.
For me this award was symbolically very special, for it meant a great deal to me to send a instrument back to the historical home of the violin family, and against very strong competition, emerge with an award.
The viola that I submitted to this competition was a hybrid of a Brescian Da Salo model. As the competition required an unantiqued finished, I regularized some the most free and wild features of the Da Salo that I know and love so well through my antiqued violas. This act of disciplining some of the Da Salo shapes, arches, and lines was very instructive to my viola making, as it revealed how the continuum between the Brescian and Cremonese conceptions of arching effects the tone of a finished viola. While some makers prefer or strictly adhere to either the making of pristinely varnished instruments or to antiqued copies, I prefer to work in both idioms, and I find both type of finish imminently beautiful and valid for today's musicians.
Kelvin Scott Featured in Strad Magazine's "Launch Pad."
In the October 2006 issue of Strad Magazine, Kelvin Scott was featured as one of the "Strad's pick of up and coming makers" in the world of violinmaking.
Scroll of winning Gasparo Da Salo Viola.
Wins VSA Gold Medal at Violin Society of America's 16th International
As life in my workshop last fall became very busy with new instrument
commissions and a flurry of other violinmaking activities, I decided
not to attend in person the Violin Society of America's 16th International
competition. Instead, I sent two instrument a viola and a violin to
the competition to see how they would fare in the competition..
All in all it was a very good outing for my instruments and a pleasing
endorsement of of the quality of my instruments.
Scott and Son Violins?
On March17th, 2004, Ian David William Scott, Rachelles and my
first child, was born. Since his birth, Ian has been very interested
in the sound of violins and enjoys the kind attentions of all of the
clients who visit our shop. Now that he is crawling, it is a common
sight to see him sneaking into the workshop and chewing on chips and
shavings of spruce and maple
craftsman can never get too early
a start at knowing his materials!
A New Gasparo DA Salo Model Viola!
Each year I make at least one trip to the U.K., and one of my inevitable
stops is the Ashmolean Museum in Oxford. The Ashmolean houses one of
the world's most outstanding collections of stringed instruments, the
Hill Collection of Musical Instruments. Among the instruments in this
collection are several very fine examples of Gasparo DA Salo. For years,
one viola in particular, has captivated me with its strong and honest
elegance, intimating back to another era's aesthetic, one so rarely
seen in workmanship styles of our own age.
During the summer of 2003, thanks to the generosity of the collection's curator, I was able to spend two days with the DA Salo viola. This supplied me with the resources to set out and developed a DA Salo model closely based on the Hill Collection's original. The results have been stunning, producing an instrument with a dark and expansive viola tone. I look forward to explore the potential of this model for many years to come.
Kelvin Scott Violins moves its violinmaking studio to its new home in Knoxville.
In spring of 2003, Kelvin Scott Violins moved from its
previous location on the north side of Chicago to Knoxville, Tennessee.
This represents an exciting time for the workshop, and we have never
been busier making new instruments. Nevertheless, we have found our
new home city to offer a rich musical landscape, from an interesting
concert season with the various area orchestras, principally, the KSO,
to the folk music tradition that has such deep roots in Eastern Tennessee.
Violin wins Certificate of Merit for Tone at 2002 VSA Convention and
Radke and Scott
Phone: (865) 456-7891