John Juzek – Guarneri Model Violin 1979


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Violinmaker in Prague
Master art copy of: …… Guarnerius 1979

In the early 20th Century, a talented Czech luthier name Jan Juzek worked in Prague and began to make his mark on the stringed instrument world. Mr. Juzek was an extremely prolific maker, had a keen eye, entrepreneurial business sense, and possessed excellent attention to detail. Before WWII the instruments were made in Prague. From 1920 throughout the 1970s, the craftsmen were from the Bohemia region on both sides of the German-Czechoslovak border. The business grew big time when his brother Robert Juzek immigrated to New York and started Metropolitan Music, first in New York City and then later near my hometown in Springfield, New Jersey. Juzek instruments, especially Master Art level, gained a worldwide audience for their high-quality violins, violas, celli, and basses. As demand for string instruments in North America increased John Juzek purchased violins and violas from other craftsmen, mostly from Schönbach; according to advertising literature from Czechoslovakia they built instruments to his specifications. We believe our Guarnerius model violin is from one of these independent craftsmen, indicative of the all black label and not a label of multiple colors. The violin has a choice, tight straight grain spruce top, and Bosnian maple for the back and ribs like the original Master Arts from the 20’s and 30’s. The instrument has beautiful edgework, spot on purfling, fine arching, and accurate classic graduations. The maple back is a knockout one-piece, and the matching ribs, neck, and scroll are highly flamed too. The varnish is a transparent orange/brown all on a golden ground. The instrument is in very good condition and has some slight visible playing wear in the varnish.

• Corpus 355.0 mm.
• Major Width 211.0 mm.
• Minor Width 170.0 mm.
• Rib Height 30.0 mm.

The sound is beautiful and clear. The instrument has an awesome bottom end with plenty of life. I loved playing the violin because it resonates and has excellent sustain on all four of the voices. I also loved the response (the sound jumps) off all the strings. There is no spot where the violin doesn’t have it. Even in the higher positions the violin retains great character and tone. This violin has a wow sound! The sound is mature, strong, and smooth under the ear as well as 35 feet away. This is a gorgeous violin with classic Guarneri lines with a way above average tone.

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