A Fine and Unusual Italian-American by J.Y. Parmelle, 1889. 15 3/4”

A fine and unusual Italian-American viola attributed to J. Y. Parmelle of New Haven, 1889. The label is handwritten in ink and very difficult to make out. The back features maple of fine flaming and figuration, with matching ribs and scroll. However, the top is most unusual. After counting the joints, I have concluded that it was fashioned from 8 different strips of spruce, further evidenced by the swathes of deeper varnish stains. The viola may appear robust, but is remarkably comfortable to play with a back length of 404 mm (15.9”) and a string length of just 360mm (14.174”). It’s sound is as rich and complex as it’s appearance, lending a voice brimming with both brilliance and depth, easily modular between an earthy sweetness and a velvet huskiness.

I started my career on this viola which spent the last three years with Lauren Spaulding of @monochromeviola, the Thalea String Quartet and Talia Rouge Duo - featured in many of her recordings until she acquired the simply wonderful Degani she now calls her partner.

Setup with a pernambuco tailpiece, with titanium tailgut and a set of Evah Pirazzi Gold strings; recently bushed scroll and fresh new pegs.

Back Length: 404mm (15.9”)
Upper Bout: 197mm
Lower Bout: 240mm
String Length: 360mm (14.174”)

Only left in stock