Wang Li “The Carrodus” 1741 Copy of Guarneri Del Gesu Violin – Guangzhou, 2023


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Wang Li – Replica
“The Carrodus” 1741 Replica Guarneri del Gesu
Guangzhou, China anno 2023

Chinese makers have been producing affordable instruments for the past 60 years. Unlike many European countries such as Germany and France which have had hundreds of years of violin making history, China’s violin making tradition is comparatively short. In the 1960’s and 70’s China saw an increased number of violinists worldwide creating a corresponding surge in demand for instruments. By 1980, to improve the quality of their instruments, China began sending violin makers to study abroad in Italy, Germany, and America to learn the craft of violin making. In 1992 many state-owned factories making furniture and sewing machines that were run by political appointees were closed by government mandate and slowly emerged to become semi-privately owned violin making facilities and workshops with the men returning with these new skills. New Chinese makers had to make a much better quality instrument to compete and turn a profit which led to rapid improvements. They rediscovered what the older Markneukirchen and Mirecourt makers had already known.

Li was a talented wood carved in his teens and twenties that moved into violin making. He also must have a fine engineering mind and talent which lead into his research and fine details in the craft of making. I see this in the replica of this Carrodus Guarneri, a violin with a slightly smaller pattern following the design of the 1741 Del Gesu. Li studied the Italian master instruments, which is the core to his instrument prowess. The choice of wood is beautiful, and the varnish is a golden yellow on an amber brown, tastefully antiqued to give the instrument an older look. The violin has English boxwood fittings with pear collars and pins in the pegs.

• Corpus 353.5 mm
• Major Width 206.0 mm
• Minor Width 168.0 mm
• Rib Height 29.0 mm
• String Length 325.0 mm

The sound is clear and strong, delivering power and warmth under the ear and in a hall. The tone is rapid and the response off the string is noticeably nice. The violin leans to the brighter side and responds better than well. A gorgeous sound, full of life even when you travel up in positions. The response off the strings will make a player take a second look at the instrument. Yes, it’s that nice. I love the power and brightness of the E & A string and the depth and layered maturity of the lower end. A very nice violin for the player looking to upgrade their maturity of sound.

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