Integrity and Authenticity: Benjamin Bowman (Final Note Magazine)

Benjamin Bowman, concertmaster of the American Ballet Theatre and well-traveled chamber musician, featured in Final Note Magazine with pics by Frances Marshall Photography. CLICK HERE for FULL INTERVIEW.

Here’s a snippet with Benjamin talking about the importance of the violin/bow relationship:

“There are dramatically differing opinions on the impact a bow can make. Maybe, it’s because of my last name and all the teasing that comes along with that, but I do have a very strong relationship with bows, and I think they are at least as important as the instrument one chooses to play on. Unlike violins, which have been largely standardized in terms of materials and dimensions, bows vary quite dramatically in weight, and in quality of materials. Other factors include the camber of a bow (its curve), and how flexible or stiff the player likes the bow to be. All of these things aside, the bow also has to have a positive relationship with the instrument. Believe it or not, hearing two different bows played on the same violin can sound like two different instruments. I’ve always found this fascinating, and if I had my way I would probably own dozens. Unfortunately, the cost is prohibitive, so I’ve been limited to two fine bows for the time being, and I’m not complaining. My favorite go-to is my Joseph Henry, made in Paris c. 1860. He is widely regarded as one of the finest bow makers.”