A violin played on the Titanic, unfortunately water damanged.
This story is really fascinating and really sad. A man in England found the violin that belonged to Wallace Hartley, lead violinist on the Titanic. If you’ve seen the James Cameron film about the Titanic, you probably remember the musicians playing until the very end. It’s just really strange and sad to think that this was the exact violin played.
A few highlights from the article:
The wooden instrument used by Wallace Hartley as the band famously played on while the liner sank was thought to have been lost in the Atlantic in the 1912 disaster.
It wasn’t until 2006 when the son of an amateur musician who had been casually given the instrument by her violin teacher unearthed it in the attic of her home.
Titanic experts have described it as the most important artefact associated with the infamous liner to have come to light.
Within minutes of Titanic striking an iceberg on April 14, 1912, Hartley was instructed to assemble the band and play music in order to maintain calm.
The eight musicians gallantly performed on the chilly boat deck of the Titanic while the passengers lined up for the lifeboats.
The band carried on until the bitter end, famously playing a final hymm of ‘Nearer, My God, To Thee.’
Hartley, and the other seven band members, perished along with 1,500 passengers and crew when the luxurious vessel sank at 2.20am on April 15.
After his body was recovered by the ship the Mackay Bennett 10 days later, the violin wasn’t listed by officials among the inventory of items found in his possession.
A newspaper report later stated that Hartley was found fully dressed and with the instrument strapped to his body.
The conflicting accounts gave way to the theory that either the violin simply floated off in the Atlantic or was stolen by somebody involved with handling the bodies.
One aspect of my life I have not talked about very much on this blog is my violin playing. I have been playing since middle school and played in a youth orchestra throughout middle school and high school (youth orchestra was amazing and the only thing that kept me sane – I despised middle school and high school).
I started taking lessons about two months after I started playing and continued doing so until two months ago, when I had my last lesson at my university’s music department a few weeks before graduation. Since starting university, I have played a lot of Mozart. During my final year, we (my teacher and I) worked on Mozart’s Adagio in E major, K. 261. For my jury after second year, I played the slow movement from Mozart’s Violin Concerto No. 4, K. 218. Continue reading →
That's my violin. I was trying to do a depth of field shot, but I don't know if I succeeded.
One thing I don’t like about this whole graduation thing is I won’t have any more violin lessons. I started taking lessons in elementary school and continued through middle school and high school. After I went to university, I explored the possibility of taking lessons through the music department, and I stuck with it. But now, I’m not in school and I don’t have a teacher to go to every week. I don’t have assigned scales and etudes to struggle through. It’s just a very odd feeling, and I don’t like it one bit.
Are there any other amateur musicians out there (i.e. those who do not play for a living) in a similar situation? Do you plan to continue playing?
While watching this documentary last week (yes, I do spend my free time watching things like The Art of Piano), I was pleasantly surprised to encounter some Russian. There was also some German and French, which were, unfortunately, not subtitled. The Russian wasn’t either, but that’s a language I can actually understand.
Anyway, The Art of Piano was good, but I liked The Art of Violin better, probably because I related to it more (since I do not play piano). I’ve seen The Art of Violin so many times, as my previous violin teacher would often recommend that I watch it.