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Two violinists in court over cost of a bow

Filip Fenrych is a violinist in the Dallas Symphony. Last year he inquired after a bow  from the widow of a former associate concertmaster and wound up buying both bow and Scarampella violin for $90,000.

Now they are facing each other in court over the documentation.

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  1. It’s a very sad story. One would think that Mr. Hudson, who was 80 when he died of cancer in 2011, would have either been able to sell his instruments before he died, or else made sure that the documentation about his instruments was all in order and readily accessible to his heirs. This is really not a big job if you already have insurance on your valuable instruments.

    But it’s possible that he hadn’t, since the offer was made only two or three months after his death, and getting an appraisal from a reputable dealer takes time. To me, it seems that his widow might have been in too much of a hurry to sell if she couldn’t the paperwork ready. The fact that the appraisal which did finally come through was not able to certify that the instrument(s) was/were genuine, is telling. The question of which appraisal takes precedence arises now — wasn’t there a famous case recently published of a Stradivarius violin, owned by a Finnish violinist or foundation, and which had an iron-clad pedigree, that turned out to be a copy?

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