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From the ARCHIVE

Paganini researcher S. L. Salzedo gives his effusive first impressions of the violinist’s birthplace Genoa, as well as his initial thoughts on seeing ‘Il Cannone’

FROM THE STRAD MARCH 1940 VOL.50 NO.599

The glorious city of

Genoa, rightly called “The Superb,” is well worth a visit. Its main thoroughfares are largely made up of palatial marble edifices. On all sides one saw evidence of great accumulated wealth. These spacious boulevards were thronged with an animated crowd, seemingly more varied and brighter in their dress, and more joyous in their demeanour than we are accustomed to in England. There was music in the air, in the bright clear colours of everything, in the soft sunshine of this favoured clime. One almost believed that one had suddenly been transplanted to fairyland. A sense of almost indescribable exultation takes possession of you, making you feel as if you were in touch with the very source of life, or as if, hidden in the glorious sunlight, one sensed a greater world beyond. No wonder that, with such a climate, music wells up naturally and seems native to the Italian soul. From this air, from this sunshine, from these colours, Paganini’s soul surely imbibed its music also. Even the street singers, of which there were a few, sing musically. And so, after saturating myself with the delightful novelty of the place and people for a day, I made my way on the following day to the Palazzo Municipale, i.e., the Town Hall. Surely no more worthy a resting-place for the Guarnerius of Paganini could be found than this building, a residence of the old rulers of Genoa. Each of them had left a memento behind in the F form of a spacious hall with magnificent g wall and ceiling paintings, each hall vying TAS with the other, and each so dazzlingly z splendid that it seemed the very acme of artistic achievement until one saw the next.

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About The Strad

We explore the life of viola pedagogue Karen Tuttle and investigate the potential for Chinese tonewood. Augustin Hadelich takes us through Beethoven’s Violin Concerto in Masterclass and we examine Pablo Casals’s approach to vibrato. Plus Leonidas Kavakos’s Sentimental Work