Discovering a new richness of sound with Katharina Kühl from the NDR Symphony Orchestra

The cello group of the NDR Symphony Orchestra, a long-term cooperation partner of ours, has given us invaluable feedback during the past years.

Last week we had the pleasure of working again with one of the cellists from Hamburg. Katharina Kühl came by with her old Italian cello which she had strung with Larsen Magnacore® medium and strong strings (A medium, D strong, G medium and C strong) to respond to the specific needs of the instrument. This time we changed the Magnacore® C strong to a Magnacore® Arioso string and it was a success: The Arioso C string brought a new richness to the lower register of the instrument and the upper register gained in sound colour.

Thank you for stopping by. We couldn’t do it without you!

Read more about the Magnacore Arioso strings

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Effortless playing with lower tension strings

Trying strings with musicians is always an experience full of surprises. When Susanne Hoffmann from the South Denmark Philharmonic came to visit us, she brought with her a Bächle cello from 1993 strung with Larsen Soloist and Original strong strings, as recommended by her violinmaker. Through the string test, we found out that using strong strings on Susanne’s cello was not necessary. In fact, by choosing strings of a much lighter tension, the instrument became much easier to play. It is like the difference between using a pencil with a hard or a soft core. With a hard pencil, the writer needs to work harder than with a softer pencil, however, the result might be more suitable to the writers’ need and expectation.

When Susanne went back home, she was looking forward to experiencing a new easiness of playing.

Thank you Susanne for visiting us.

Does that mean that every player should look for less tension strings?

The answer to that question is no. Some players prefer strings which offer more resistance to the bow while others prefer to let the instrument sing by itself. At the same time, an instrument gives the best of its potential at an optimum level of tension and this level differs from instrument to instrument. To find out which level of tension fits your personal style of playing and your instrument is not an easy quest. Through these blogs, we tell you about the experience of the players we meet, hoping that these narrations will provide a guideline for other players.

If you want to know more about the effect of string tension on your instrument, we strongly recommend you to read the blog: What is the gauge – and how to choose between soft, medium and strong tension strings?, which provides an understanding of how different levels of tension affect your instrument and your playing.


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How to make an instrument sing

Dieter Göltl, assistant solo cellist at the NDR Symphony Orchestra in Hamburg came by with his Sacconi cello from 1926.

Over the years, Larsen Strings has enjoyed very good collaboration with the cello section of the NDR Symphony Orchestra, and Mr. Göltl who had noticed the enthusiasm of his colleagues and the result of our efforts with their instruments was now ready to meet us.

Mr. Göltl had been using the same string set-up for many years and was quite satisfied with it. However, he remembered that his instrument some 15 years earlier had a distinctly more open sound and feeling. At  that time when he had just acquired the instrument, it was in a very bad condition. His violinmaker replaced the bass bar and after this the instrument stayed somehow closed and oppressed.

When Mr. Göltl came to Larsen Strings the instrument was still beautiful but not perfectly balanced. The G and D strings were weaker than the higher and lower strings. Furthermore, Mr. Göltl used a dampening rubber ring under the A string at the bridge. At the end of our session the Sacconi cello had four Larsen Magnacore strings, and the rubber ring under the A string had become redundant. Mr. Göltl could suddenly recognize his instrument from 15 years earlier; he recognized the sound and feeling of the instrument. The instrument had regained its freedom and it was able to breathe. When being played by its owner it was actually singing.

Thank you Mr. Göltl for your visit. We hope to hear from you again soon.


If you want to know more about the Larsen Magnacore strings, please visit our homepage for factsheet, testimonials, etc.

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