Skip to Content
History

The “Red Violin” Appears in Santa Monica

At the end of the movie Red Violin, a mostly fictional account of the lost 200-plus years of Stradivari's 1720 "Red Mendelssohn" violin, a mysterious, secret bidder purchased the instrument for $1.7 million at a Sotheby's auction, leading to much speculation as to the violin's fate (that part's true). It turned out to be a gift for Elizabeth Pitcairn, whose grandfather helped purchase it for the then 16-year-old virtuoso, which sure beats pennies coming out of your ears as far as granddad gifts go. Last night, Pitcairn performed for a small private audience at the restaurant FIG, home of "bacon-wrapped bacon" and a luxury lengua torta, that is closed every Monday in the Fairmont Hotel in Santa Monica. Performing the very demanding, "Opus 14 for violin," a three-part concerto composed by Samuel Butler, plus an encore of the gypsy classic "Le Chale Bleu," Pitcairn demonstrated the heretofore unmatched craftsmanship of Antonio Stradivari (no one has improved on the designs of this Italian artisan), while showcasing her own extreme talent, while aided by a pianist.

The instrument's deep, warm resonance and nearly divine sustain truly became one with the player's plaintive playing, turning the instrument into an extension of her inner voice and feelings. Pitcairn herself says she has no idea where she and the violin begin and end, as the two really have become one over the years. She considers herself the protector of the instrument before the next owner comes along, a responsibility she feels honored and sometimes frightened to have, no less as she prepares to embark on a European tour and numerous customs check-points. She feels that after years of hard work mastering the instrument, she only now feels ready to really explore the capabilities of the violin and herself. The violinist has albums and will no doubt be popping up again in L.A. and across the States. If you love music that comes straight from the soul, modern or classic, do yourself a big favor and seek her live shows out.

Photo: Tatiana Arbogast

Here Pitcairn plays Ferdinand Ries' "Perpetuum Mobile."


Romanian "Hora Staccato," composed by Dinicu

Romani "Cigány tánc," traditional dance, filmed in Kiralyhaza, Hungary

Stay in touch

Sign up for our free newsletter

More from L.A. TACO

How to Celebrate Juneteenth in Los Angeles

Los Angeles is the place to be this Juneteenth, with a wider variety of free and exciting ways to celebrate, there is something for everyone to attend or participate in.

Announcing the TACO MADNESS 2024 ‘Best in Show’ Champion, Plus All the Tacos and Good Times You Missed Out On!

Thank you to every single of you who came out to support us in our quinceañera edition of TACO MADNESS 2024! This year's winner was a shocker and first-in-its class! See if you spot yourself and your TACO MADNESS crew in our photo recap!

June 18, 2024

‘Tacos With a Side of Dope Music:’ A Preview of the DJs Gracing The Stage at TACO MADNESS

Attendees of this weekend have much to look forward to—from behind the turntables to behind the grills, TACO MADNESS promises to bring something for everybody, and the L.A. TACO looks forward to bringing all of the energy, excitement, and culture to La Plaza De Culturas y Artes this Saturday.

What To Eat In L.A. This Weekend: L.A.’s Best Tacos, Tequila, and Stuffed Churros at Our 15th TACO MADNESS

McSatan cheeseburgers, suadero on house-nixtamalized tortillas from one of Mexico's biggest chefs, steak banh mi tacos, and so much more, in one place!

June 14, 2024

The Five Best Tacos in South Gate

From a spot that uses a unique Michoacán-style "salsa agridulce" to a fish taquería where the batter stays crispy, next time you're in SELA, now you know! Southeast Los Angeles, presente!

June 13, 2024
See all posts