funny stories

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Darth Fiddler flattened...


ImageAfter a man crossed over to the dark side and tackled Victoria’s famous Darth Fiddler, a music store has stepped up to help the busker get back on his feet. Darth Fiddler, the performer’s alias for Randy McKenna, was performing at his usual perch at Government and Wharf streets on Saturday, when he was assaulted at about 7 p.m.


Heavenly conductor

ConductorSo the violinist dies and arrives at the pearly gates. St Peter asks him what he did for a living.
'Played fiddle in the local symphony,' answers the unfortunate soul.
'Excellent,' replies the saint, 'we have an upcoming concert and we can do with some help in the seconds.
The day of the first rehearsal arrives and our hero is sitting nervously in the third desk waiting for God, the conductor, to arrive. God appears and moves (in his normal mysterious ways) to the podium.
'What's He like as a conductor?' the violinists asks his stand partner.
'He's OK, except that He sometimes thinks he's Von Karajan!'


Beethoven, God and us poor violin players...

ImageIt is said that Beethoven truly believed that he was communicating with God while composing. According to one legend a violinist (not a violist!) once complained to him about a very difficult passage in one of his compositions. Beethoven allegedly replied:

"When I composed that, I was conscious of being inspired by God Almighty," Beethoven replied. "Do you think I can consider your puny little fiddle when He speaks to me?"



One Russian is an anarchist, two Russians are a chess game, three Russians are a revolution, and four Russians are the Budapest String Quartet.   Jascha Heifetz


Top Billing

Noted violinist Jascha Heifetz, who often played with pianist Arthur Rubinstein and cellist Gregor Piatigorsky, often complained that Rubinstein always got top billing. "If the Almighty himself played the violin," he once remarked, "the credits would still read 'Rubinstein, God, and Piatigorsky - in that order."


Mummy - something to send shivers down the spine....

I recently strolled into a second-hand bookstore and came across a book entitled “Artists’ Pigments c. 1650-1835” by R.D. Harley. It looked like an excellent reference for the trials and tribulations of a violin maker and I promptly bought it. I would like to share with you a section from this book that is probably worthless from a violin making point of view … on second thought, we are dealing with a craft where terms like dragon’s blood, cat gut, tail-hair of Mongolian mare are not uncommon.


Hindemith's toilet humour

Here is an extract from the recent The Strad magazine (July 2009) of an article by Louise Lansdown regarding weird musical plays written by the composer and violinist Paul Hindemith in his youth. I think I also want some of the stuff that he was smoking...

The young Paul Hindemith wrote outrageously comic musical plays that display his bizarre imagination. Louise Lansdown describes the strange plot of Viola Mania, whose protagonists turns the viola into a murder weapon and flushes himself down the lavatory.

Act one begins with Abdul standing before a picture of his hated boss whining petulantly about his lot in life: 'Thanks to the bank I am totally ill. I could leave. But then this play would not come to be written. Such a misfortune I must prevent. Abdul Linder - that's me - remains alive. And desires to give Paul his chance to have his fling. My forbearance gives way to anger. My angelic patience and almost fairy-tale graciousness finally gives way. Long live vengeance!'


Benny vs Mendelssohn

Benny's Violin Jack Benny was famed for his role as a violin-playing miser. His performances left something to be desired. "Jack Benny played Mendelssohn last night," one reviewer reported. "Mendelssohn lost."


A fair idea gone slightly awry…

This was posted yesterday on Maestronet...


Schoolboy stabs violin teacher

ImageA 13-year-old schoolboy stabbed his music teacher with a kitchen knife, leaving the blade stuck in the teacher`s back as he made his escape. The pair had just finished a private violin lesson at a
middle school near Venice when the pupil allegedly turned on him, stabbing him once in the back. Teacher Fabio Paggioro, 36, had reportedly told the boy, 'See how you manage to do well when you put the effort in'.

Police said the stabbing was premeditated, as the boy had brought in a large kitchen knife from home. After the boy fled, Paggioro managed to alert a piano teacher in the next room who removed the knife from her colleague`s back and called an ambulance.

Paggioro is expected to make a full recovery and told hospital staff he did not want to speak to the media.

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