Text Box: VIOLINIST autographs
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Price: $250.00

EXCELLENT CONDITION

           LEON SAMETINI - VIOLINIST

Autographed and inscribed textured original matte double-weight 7” x 9” photograph inscribed to the luthier Carl George (1883-1950) to whom he writes, for Carl George, “American Stradivarius” with best wishes, Chicago, Oct. 1935.

Sametini (1886-1944) is an interesting violinist in the pantheon of European immigrant pianists who came to America.  Born to Italian parents in Rotterdam, he began playing the violin at six, studying with his uncle.  A child prodigy, he was sent to Amsterdam to study with Bram Eldering a pupil of Hubay. He began performing soon after and became a favorite of Queen Wilhemina who arranged a concert tour for the young violinist when he was 15.  The Queen gave him a 1730 Santo Serafin violin and then sent him to Prague at 16 to study with Otakar Sevcik at the Prague Conservatory.  While a student of Eldering, he worked on his bowing.  Sevcek according to Sametini was a technique taskmaster.  That said, he viewed Sevcik’s bowing technique as substandard.  He lasted a year with the Czech.  The one thing of importance that happened to Sametini whilst in Prague is his neighbor was Dvorak.  Sevcik refused to teach the Dvorak concerto, so Sametini stopped Dvorak one day and the composer agreed to work with him on the concerto himself and complimented the young violinist on his progress with the work.  Sevcik despite all of this liked the young violinist and his work and gave him the Czech premiere of the Sinigaglia violin concerto.  Sinigaglia and Sametini became friendly and Sametini gave the London premiere of his Rapsodia Piedmontese.  After the violinist left Prague, he began to follow Ysa˙e, becoming what Heinrich Wilhelm Ernst became to Paganini. He followed Ysa˙e everywhere and the older violinist became an informal musical advisor and also appreciated his performances.  Sametini was also influenced by Elman who he referred to as the “Caruso of violinists”, Kreisler and Thibaud.  He also was an enthusiast of Carl Flesch’s teaching.  Sametini arrived in the United States in 1909 having spent a number of years in England performing there, throughout Europe and Australia and teaching.  Isolde Manges was one of his pupils and when he left England she went to study with Leopold Auer.  In the United States he settled at the Chicago Musical College where he became head of the department.  Like Sevcik, he no longer performed regularly as a soloist except by special urgent occasion and typically with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra and at the last moment.  Later, to keep his hand in the game, he had a regular gig as Concertmaster of the WGN radio station Concert Orchestra and from 1942-1943 he stepped in for a year as Concertmaster of the CSO.  His main avocation became teaching technique to young promising violinists including, Harry Adaskin, Mildred Brown, Guila Bustabo, Oliver Colbentson, George Perlman, Aaron Rosand, Silvestre Revueltas, Karl Schulte, Fred Spector and Samuel Thaviu.

Rosand when interviewed insisted Sametini was the reincarnation of Ysa˙e in looks and performance.

He passed away of a massive heart attack at 58.  His son Robert became a cellist with the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra.