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Coruss syntheic bow hair

LETTER of the MONTH

NEITHER HIDE NOR HAIR

Reading the 2019 Accessories supplement, much of which was concerned with ethical and sustainable products, I was particularly impressed by the article on synthetic bow hair (‘Unbridled Possibility’). I was so pleased to read that Sarah Markle of the Charlotte Symphony Orchestra uses Coruss bow hair in order to avoid animal products. Like Markle, I am vegan and I struggle with the ethics of playing an instrument – the violin – that does not conform to my wish to refrain from supporting industries that kill animals. Some industrial production of horsehair involves the slaughter of horses, a fact most string players are unaware of. By promoting synthetic bow hair to her colleagues, Markle has demonstrated that she is a wonderful advocate for animal welfare. I hope that luthiers will follow her example and begin to research substitutes for animal hide glue.

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About The Strad

Double bassist Leon Bosch discusses his career, and we investigate the bass makers of Manchester. There’s an interview with early music pioneer Eduard Melkus and cellist Johannes Moser gives a Mendelssohn Masterclass. Plus Leonidas Kavakos’s teaching tips