The sound of string players tuning their instruments often signals the beginning of a concert. What happens when you change up this familiar tuning? Many baroque composers experimented with re-pitching some of the strings to draw different sounds and possibilities from the violin, a technique called scordatura. We explore one of the most popular of these re-tunings (AEAE), which offers a very open, resonant sound — evoking trumpets and vielles (medieval string instruments). We also say a quick hello to our fiddler cousins, who still turn to this tuning for some of their traditional tunes.
Erlebach Sonata in A Major for scordatura violin, viola da gamba & continuo
Biber Partia no. 3 for 2 scordatura violins & continuo, from Harmonia artificioso-ariosa
Veracini meets Quebec fiddle tunes
Geneviève Gilardeau & Cristina Zacharias violins
Felix Deak viola da gamba
Charlotte Nediger harpsichord