As a performer, I play three different violins: a Modern violin, a Baroque violin and what I like to think of as a Renaissance violin. These three instruments allow me to have three distinct voices, each one has the right sound for certain types of music.
This is the violin that is played in the symphony orchestras of the world today, and by most contemporary violinists. I enjoy it’s large expressive palette, it has a full robust tone and a wonderful range of dynamics and tone colours. My violin was made by Marco Dobretsovich, the foremost violin maker of Alexandria, Egypt, in the early 20th century. My bow is made by Roy Quade, a highly respected Canadian bow maker.
This is a modern replica of the violins played in the time of Bach and Handel. I enjoy the lightness and responsiveness of the instrument, and the ease with which it resonates. The baroque violin has a less powerful tone than the modern violin, but its flexibility of articulation and ability to shape every note create a wonderfully detailed intimacy. My baroque violin is made by John Jacob Karwandy, of Alberta, Canada, and my Baroque bow is made by Ken Mallard of B.C., Canada.
The violin dates back to the late 1400’s, but until into the 1600’s was customarily played held against the upper arm or chest. Lowering the violin hold to this level changes the balance of the bow so that the up bow and down bow strokes are much more similar in weight. I enjoy this evenness in the articulated passages of the late renaissance and early baroque repertoire. I find this style of playing matches the articulation of the recorder. This violin is an anonymous old German instrument with a lovely dark resonance.
The viola is the lower voiced cousin of the violin. Tuned a perfect fifth lower than the violin and slightly larger, it has a warm rich tone. I primarily play the viola in chamber music settings.