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How to Get a Priceless Violin

Korean violinist Yoojin Jang

Korean violinist Yoojin Jang

Acquiring the tools of the trade for a young violinist is particularly daunting. Of course they have to start small, and work their way up—in 2011, the Lady Blunt Strad, built in 1721, sold to a private collector for over $10,000,000. But realistically, how does a young player who’s angling for a career as a soloist acquire something that costs more than most houses?

This week’s Dame Myra Hess artist, violinist Yoojin Jang solved this problem—for two years, anyway—by winning the use of a Strad at the 2013 Munetsugu Angel Violin Competition in Nagoya, Japan. The instrument was built in 1697 by Antonio Stradivari. Jang is a student of Miriam Fried at the New England Conservatory (Miriam Fried is also director of the Steans Institute at Ravinia).

Hear Yoojin Jang playing music by Dvorak and Corigliano on Wednesday’s Dame Myra Hess concert at 12:15 PM.

See the video of the Strad-winning performance:

As a bonus, here is a particularly refreshing performance of music by Astor Piazolla in which Jang is accompanied by guzheng, a Chinese zither:

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