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Young violin and cello players rewarded with Old Master instruments from Canada Council Musical Instrument Bank

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Cecilia String Quartet’s Rachel Desoer with her new cello, a 1929 Carlo Giuseppe Oddone, valued at $200,000.

The Canada Council this morning released the names of the recipients of $35 million worth of Old Master violins and cellos plus one prized cello bow from its Music Instrument Bank for the next three years.

Three of the 18 winners are are from Toronto — but, like so many of the 28 finalists in the instrument competition, living or studying abroad.

Two of the winners — violinists Véronique Mathieu and Andréa Tyniec — are from Montrealers currently living in Toronto.

The most recognizable Ontario name on this year’s list is that of cellist Rachel Desoer, a native Hamiltonian and member of the Cecilia String Quartet. Desoer will, for the next three years, be playing the newest of the instruments awarded today, a cello made in 1929 by Italian craftsman Carlo Giuseppe Odone.

The most valuable instruments in the Instrument Bank are four Stradivari violins, appraised at $5 million each, and the 1696 “Bonjour” Stradivarius cello, a $11 million instrument awarded to Calgarian Arnold Choi, currently studying at Yale University.

The cello bow, the only award not involving an instrument, goes to Toronto-raised cellist Karen Ouzounian, who lives in New York City.

There was a total of 51 applications. The 28 finalists performed live for the competition adjudicators at the Royal Conservatory of Music over the past several days.

You can find much more detail here.

John Terauds



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