23rd December: Steinway unveils Black Masterpiece Limited Edition, Mozartwoche 2021 to be moved online, FBI seeks 1710 Amati violin

Wednesday 23rd December 2020

Steinway unveils Black Masterpiece Limited Edition

Steinway & Sons has launched a new Limited Edition grand piano to celebrate the 20th anniversary of the Steinway Crown Jewels collection.

The new ‘Black Masterpiece’ grands have been crafted in Hamburg using 20 of the finest woods from around the world, including olive, amber, tamo, eucalyptus and jatoba. Unlike the black grand pianos from Steinway’s core range, each Black Masterpiece instrument has been preserved rather than polished, allowing for the characteristics and marks of each wood to be clearly visible depending on the light.

All the castings on the Black Masterpieces are finished with a high-quality PVD (physical vapour deposition) coating, harder than chrome and more valuable than gold plating. Each instrument features a numbered medallion inside the case, which, along with the soundboard, is finished in black. Tahiti pearl is embedded in the keyboard lid.

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Die Mozartwoche 2021 wird ins Internet verlegt

Mozarts 265. Geburtstag wird Ende Januar mit einem Streaming-Programm gefeiert, teilte der Veranstalter der Mozartwoche am 22.12. mit: «Wir bedauern sehr, so kurz vor Start, die Mozartwoche 2021 nicht in ihrer geplanten Form durchführen zu können. Mit viel Optimismus hatten wir – Intendant Rolando Villazon und das Team der Stiftung Mozarteum – bis zuletzt die Hoffnung, dass das Festival in Salzburg Ende Jänner in vollem Umfang stattfinden kann. Die aktuellen Regelungen der Bundesregierung bzgl. der Öffnungen in der Kultur ab dem 18. Jänner sind ein positives Signal, jedoch für die Mozartwoche mit 56 Veranstaltungen an elf Tagen leider nicht praktikabel.»

Nach all den Monaten der Planungen und Umplanungen, erneuten finanziellen Kraftanstrengungen sowie unzähligen Gesprächen mit Künstlern, Ensembles und Orchestern und auch dem positiven Feedback, das nach der Bekanntgabe des adaptierten Programms im November eingetroffen ist, schmerze die Absage der Mozartwoche in ihrer zuletzt geplanten Form sehr, heisst es in der Presseaussendung. Dennoch wird es 2021 eine Mozartwoche geben, in verkürzter Form und online.


Mozartwoche 2021 to be moved online

Mozart’s 265th birthday will be celebrated with a streaming program at the end of January, the organizer of the Mozartwoche announced on Dec. 22: “We regret very much not being able to stage the Mozartwoche 2021 in its planned form so shortly before the start. With a great deal of optimism, we – artistic director Rolando Villazon and the team of the Mozarteum Foundation – had hoped until the very end that the festival in Salzburg would be able to take place in full at the end of January. The current regulations of the federal government regarding the openings in culture from January 18 are a positive signal, but unfortunately not practicable for the Mozart Week with 56 events on eleven days.”

After all the months of planning and rescheduling, renewed financial efforts and countless discussions with artists, ensembles and orchestras, as well as the positive feedback received after the announcement of the adapted program in November, the cancellation of the Mozart Week in its last planned form is very painful, the press release states. Nevertheless, there will be a Mozart Week in 2021, in a shortened form and online.

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Le FBI recherche un violon Amati de 1710

Le 8 décembre, un violon Amati de 1710 a été volé à Los Feliz, un quartier de Los Angeles en Californie. L’affaire est assez sérieuse pour que l’équipe de « lutte contre la criminalité artistique » du Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), après s’être saisie de l’enquête, ait lancé un appel à témoin pour l’aider à retrouver l’inestimable instrument. Si l’on ne connaît pas l’identité de son propriétaire, on sait en revanche que « le violon a été volé dans un véhicule à la résidence de la victime qui le transportait », comme l’a indiqué à la presse locale une porte parole du FBI, qui a aussi précisé que « le violon est très précieux et, plus important encore, considéré comme une œuvre d’art et culturellement significatif. »

Amati est le nom d’une célèbre famille de luthiers italiens, actifs entre les années 1520 et 1740 à Crémone. Leurs instruments sont parmi les plus réputés, au côté des Bergonzi, Guarneri et autres Stradivari.On ignore la valeur exacte du violon qui a été dérobé, mais on peut en avoir une petite idée, sachant que le propriétaire offre une récompense de 25.000 dollars à toute personne susceptible de transmettre des informations permettant de le retrouver. 

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FBI seeks 1710 Amati violin

On December 8, a 1710 Amati violin was stolen in Los Feliz, a neighbourhood in Los Angeles, California. The case is serious enough that the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) “artistic crime control” team, after seizing the investigation, issued a call for witnesses to help them locate the invaluable instrument. If we do not know the identity of its owner, we do know, on the other hand, that “the violin was stolen from a vehicle at the residence of the victim who was transporting it”, as indicated to the local press. A spokeswoman for the FBI also clarified that “the violin is very valuable and, more importantly, considered a work of art and culturally significant.”

Amati is the name of a famous family of Italian luthiers, active between the 1520s and 1740s in Cremona. Their instruments are among the most famous, alongside the Bergonzi, Guarneri and other Stradivari. We do not know the exact value of the violin that was stolen, but we can get an idea, knowing that the owner is offering a reward of $25,000 to anyone who could pass on information allowing it to be found. 

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