Considered by many to be the most famous violin in the world, Niccolò Paganini’s “Il Cannone” violin traveled to Columbus in May 2019 for the first time in its more than 275-year history. After a nine-day exhibit at the Columbus Museum of Art, the multi-million-dollar instrument was put into the capable hands of Columbus Symphony Concertmaster Joanna Frankel to play for a sold-out concert conducted by Music Director Rossen Milanov at the Ohio Theatre on May 15, 2019. The Columbus Symphony will offer a free rebroadcast of that extraordinary, one-night-only performance on its Facebook page on Friday and Saturday, April 17 and 18, at 7:30 pm.
The program includes:
- Rossini: Overture to Barber of Seville
- Paganini: Caprice No. 5
- Paganini: Cantabile
- Tchaikovsky: Swan Lake – Pas d’action
- Tchaikovsky: Swan Lake – Valse
- Saint-Saëns: Introduction and Rondo Capriccioso
- Massenet: Meditation from Thaïs
- Mendelssohn: Symphony No. 4 “Italian” Mvt. 4
Niccolò Paganini, often referred to as the Devil’s Violinist, was one of the most celebrated musicians of all time. It is said that the “Il Cannone” violin was initially lent to him by a wealthy businessman, but upon listening to Paganini’s awe-inspiring performance, the businessman insisted he keep it. To this day, Paganini is one of few musicians who is consistently linked with one instrument.
Constructed in 1743 by Bartolomeo Giuseppe Guarneri, “Il Cannone” (“The Cannon”) is most known for the rich and powerful sounds it produces. This Italian national treasure is on permanent display at the Palazzo Doria-Tursi in Genoa, Italy. It rarely leaves its home in Genoa, making the 2019 visit to Columbus truly historic. The last time the violin traveled to the US was to New York City in 2003.