Strad Style

We watched this documentary last night.

It’s about a Stradivarius obsessed violin maker who lives out in the middle of nowhere in Ohio who, through a random Facebook contact, offers to build a copy of a famous Guarneri violin for a rising star Romanian soloist.

The violin maker, Daniel Houck, lives in a rambling farmhouse that is falling apart.

He’s taught himself violin making by watching YouTube videos and reading books about violins and their construction.

His life seems chaotic….unsupported and unfocused (except for his obsession with the violin)….and when he offers to build this violin, it seems that this story has the potential to end badly.

Surprisingly, the story doesn’t end badly.

That’s as much of a spoiler as I’m going to give, though.

This movie is a low-key “Rocky”…..except Daniel never gets to hit anyone in the face….so it’s not exactly like “Rocky”.

I appreciated this movie about obsession and achievement.

I didn’t expect the victory, though.

It felt like a slow-motion train wreck.

I guess that’s where most good art comes from, though…..the crazy and lost outliers who fixate over something and pursue it, even though their circumstances don’t seem to support any chance of success….making violins….or art….because they can’t help but do it….because they’re obsessed.

The train wreck that makes it to the station is a lot more interesting than the steady roller who always does the expected.

This is a crazy story….and very worth watching….especially if you have an interest in music or instrument making.

It’s a bigger story than one that’s just about making a violin, though.

Watch this.

Cheer at the end.




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