The Space Between the Notes

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Latest Blog Entry

Legends (4-minute read)

One of the most effective, distinctive, flamboyant, self-assured and, admittedly, short virtuoso pieces in the violin repertoire remains mostly unknown. The piece creates as glamourous an atmosphere as the composer might have been charming, and when played in recital amongst giants of the bravura repertory, maintains its integrity, walking coolly amongst the throng. Had the piece effectively been the woman it appears to describe, she would have had the allures of a diamond-clad diva. The work is entitled “Tango” – although it is more like a pastiche of all kinds of passionate dances. The very first leap to a C high up on the G string in this Tango challenged me for weeks. It rivals the trickiness of that first ascending scale in Sarasate’s “Zigeunerweisen” and it fools the player with the seeming innocence of the F sharp to B jeté in the opening bars of Kreisler’s “Caprice Viennois”. “I wonder if, like Sarasate or Kreisler, this composer was a violinist?” I mumbled to myself as I reached for that C, swinging my left arm around the rib of the violin over and over again. This is not the kind of piece you begin a recital with. You need to have warm muscles to even attempt it with the nonchalance that it demands. Within the first thirty seconds, octaves on various strings in close succession, expressive melody lines, rapid, ascending scales, a bar squeezed to bursting with sixths and ricochet figures are all on show, revealing this work as equal parts brilliant and exacting. Like so many extraordinary encore pieces, it takes hours of practice to hone, but is over in three minutes when performed. And yet, despite being outstanding, it remains: a piece for violin and piano that few have heard of, the composer a mononym mystery. The work is by Poldowski. Poldowski?

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“Legends” is a collaborative project in partnership with GAIA Music Festival, Orchid Classics and SRF 2 Kultur. Born out of an idea to elevate Irene Wieniawski aka Poldowski - composer, pianist and daughter of Henryk Wieniawski - as well as draw a family tree of blood lines and student-teacher relationships, the album showcases works that have rarely been explored before. These include Poldowski’s Tango for Violin and Piano, Eugène Ysaÿe’s String Quintet as well as George Enescu’s Sept Chansons de Clément Marot. Performing artists include violinist Kirill Troussov, soprano Rachel Harnisch and pianist Jan Philip Schulze.

With thanks to the patrons of Gwendolyn's Bridge Club for their unwavering support.

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Summer Academy

National Concert Hall of Ireland International Master Course 2022

From 2nd-7th August 2022 Gwendolyn, along with Finghin Collins, artistically directs the fourth International Master Course at the National Concert Hall. This intensive summer school offers Irish and international musicians the opportunity to partake in a series of masterclasses and seminars by world-renowned musicians Mihaela Martin, (violin), Lars Anders Tomter (viola), Frans Helmerson (cello), Finghin Collins (piano), and Gwendolyn Masin (violin). as well as concert platforms. Participants also receive performance opportunities. The IMC strives to build confidence in students and promote participation in chamber music.

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Concert Series

Cocktail für die Musen in Berne's Casino

Gwendolyn's annual concert series "Cocktail für die Musen" offers classical music fans a place to discover newness in the ‘mix’ and curious music-lovers an adventure for all the senses. The next concert takes place in January 2023 in Bern Casino's Great Hall. The evening showcases music by the groups Yurodny and Jütz. The glue holding the experience together is provided by cimbalom-player Miklós Lukács and Gwendolyn.

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The Exhale is an online platform and in-person retreat providing professional courses and holistic masterclasses to musicians, practitioners, and artists from across the globe. It is unique in its holistic approach to music education. The Exhale redesigns how music is taught and practiced by exploring a broad variety of topics and offering a range of classes that encapsulate a diversity of subjects that, to date, is not offered on one single platform anywhere else.

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Gwendolyn's 2022/2023 Dates

Live performances, artist residencies, collaborations, and masterclasses.

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Live Recording

West Side Story

Gwendolyn Masin with Melisma Saxophone Quartet.

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Author / Educator

Essays for The Strad Magazine

Gwendolyn's four-part series of articles for The Strad Magazine are woven around a holistic approach to learning and living as a musician. From the origin of human movement to the integration of somatic experience for the purpose of interpreting music, Gwendolyn builds a case for teaching human beings as a whole.

Read all essays by Gwendolyn for The Strad

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Gwendolyn and Simon Bucher live from Loeb

A unique happening, facilitating new audiences: Simon and Gwendolyn occupied the shop window of Loeb in Bern during three days of concert performances. Relive their last performance in our livestream.

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Remembering the Future of Violin Performance

“Violin Teaching in the New Millennium" is a collection of stories about music, violinists and violin performance – involving intrigues and anecdotes, revealed secrets and unpublished interviews given by some of the leading lights of the classical music world.

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Key Speaker at TEDxBern

“Better Performance Through Failing Better”

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