Classical Musicians and Their Instruments
Photo Essay by Bret Brookshire
Jennifer BourianoffJennifer Bourianoff is assistant concertmaster for the Austin Symphony Orchestra and an instructor at the Austin Chamber Music Center. She is a member of the Chamber Soloists of Austin and the Arundel Trio, which she formed with cellist Margaret Coltman-Smith and pianist Felicity Coltman. She has performed and taught throughout the United States, Mexico, Germany, France, and South America, and her playing has been featured in national commercials for Schlotzsky's and Daisy sour cream; on video games for Origin and Macintosh; and on recordings for Disney and with Eric Johnson.
Bourianoff's violin, which she calls "a huge, wonderful part of my life," was made in 1801 in Venice, Italy, by Giovanni Palencia. It was given to her by her parents when she was 13 as "an early high school graduation present." She flew to Philadelphia with her mother and her violin instructor, Diane Dickson, to try out a few violins. It took them three days to find just the right instrument. Bourianoff says that she knew instantly that this was the violin she wanted. The dealer had held it back, because he had just returned from Italy with the violin and was not yet ready to part with it, but eventually he relented. The violin has a one-piece maple back. Despite its age, the instrument is very healthy.