Charles Ervin Violins, Inc.

Dear Charles,

My expectations for my new bow were very high indeed -- first of all based on what I have heard from Steve, and learned from what you have shared with me, both in conversation at your workshop in Taos and from your website. The reality that I hold in my hand and have played Tuesday evening with Steve and for 2 hours last night far surpasses anything I imagined. I am enthralled! I am learning something about how to relax and let the bow guide me as to what to do. For the first time in many years, if not ever, I am creating sounds that fill the house with resonance and beauty (my wife's words). Big sounds, power to spare absent any distortion. I have to overcome a lifetime of too much downward pressure on the bow. Steve has helped enormously by showing me what I can achieve by pulling the string with the bow rather than forcing it down.

I've much more to say, especially about the wonderful Guarneri model, but must close now. I'll continue tomorrow.

email 7-1-09

Dear Charles,

I’ve been practicing for 2 to 3 hours every night since receiving the Guarneri model AND my wonderful new bow from Steve. As I indicated in my last email, I am on a voyage of discovery learning how to bow the strings by pulling instead of pressing down. The difference is amazing! I can get a powerful sound, very big to my ear, yet clear and resonant (especially when playing double stops in perfect tune!), and Helen agrees about the power and beauty that she hears from the other end of the house. And the more power I get out of it the more I feel the whole instrument and bow vibrating—a new experience for me!

email 7-3-09

Theodore Turner, Ph.D. Testimonials 2009 after receiving the del Gesu model violin on loan

Violin for Sale by Charles Ervin Violins, Inc.

Modeled after Guarneri del Gesu, Cremona, 1742

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Built during Joseph Guarneri del Gesu's most mature period, the Alard Guarneri del Gesu of 1742 remains the best preserved of all his works. It is now in the Cite de le Musique, Paris, France. The brothers Hill, in their classic book Violin Makers of the Guarneri Family, included that violin among the dozen finest examples of his work. Dr. Ervin has had the privilege of examining and measuring that instrument extensively.

The instrument illustrated is owned by Bob Fried, the Music Director of the Arius Chamber Music Society in Minneapolis, Minnesota.

This instrument is currently available for purchase.

I have played more than one hundred modern violins. Your del Gesu model is the first to have the classical tone.

Gregory Singer (Gregory Singer Fine Violins, New York)

I would be happy to offer thoughts about del Gesu as I may have them. You may remember that it was my review of the design drawings for one of your cellos that sparked the realization concerning the edges. I may need the same sort of technical review to discover anything new concerning del Gesu's volume. What I remember most about your del Gesu was not its loudness but rather its fullness. It seemed to fill the hall with volume from all directions. "Forte", as you probably know, translates as "strong" rather than loud. This is the quality that I've tried to achieve with Arius when forte is called for. It is conceptually very different. Like "ego" having originally been "ich" and being mistranslated by American Psychiatrists. "Strong" is the quality that I would attribute to your del Gesu copy and the one that I think is worth pursuing. It would indeed be wonderful to combine the tonal subtleties of the Hellier with the strength of the del Gesu. At that point, it would be easy to justify saying that Ervinis were "better" than either.

Bob Fried
Music Director
Arius Chamber Music Society
Minneapolis, Minnesota, 11/19/2009.

Charles Ervin Violins, Inc.

6508 Shoal Creek
Austin TX 78757
(512) 467-2277
(575) 613-5677

Website: http://www.ervinviolins.com/
E-mail: crervin@ervinviolins.com