Violin Maker, Heifitz Protege Support Int’l Competition

July 24, 2008 Updated: October 1, 2015

 (courtesy of New Tang Dynasty Television)
(courtesy of New Tang Dynasty Television)
NEW YORK—Here's an invitation hard to turn down. Hear the incredible sounds of some of the best Chinese violinists in the world. Come and be transported to another place and time as East meets West at NTDTV’s Chinese International Violin Competition. Let their performances carry you to a golden age of music as they vie for the top prizes.

An historic event, the competition is the first of its kind held outside Mainland China. Since its inception in 2001, NTDTV has been a leader in promoting classical traditions of the East around the world through its television programming, its sponsorship of dance and musical performances, and now with initiating this series of global competitions.

This history-making event has drawn some masters from related fields. Su Ding Hsuan has been making violins for over 50 years and has revived techniques that Italian craftsmen had long lost.

The design and manufacture of a truly exquisite sounding violin is an art that takes decades to master. While the thickness of the wood of an instrument affects the tone, the type of varnish used also plays a major role. Since the Industrial Revolution synthetic varnish has been used, forgoing the natural varnish that had been exported from East Asia.

Su prides himself in the use of natural varnish. Although harder to apply and unable to be mass-produced like synthetic varnish, it provides superior tonal quality. Su describes the tone of his instruments “as crystal clear in the high register, a sweet and mellow middle register, and a rich and round low register.”

Su has honored the competition with a specially-made instrument. The recipient of the Rising Star Award will receive a hand-crafted Su Ding Hsuan violin.

Another master of the instrument has agreed to participate in the judging. Sherry Kloss has been acclaimed as “one of the foremost violinists of her generation.” Among her many awards and accomplishments are Europe's Concours de Violin, the top prize at the Sterling Staff Competition and the prestigious Honorary Degree of Excellence from the Academia Chigiana Musicale in Siena, Italy.

Kloss was mentored by renowned violinist Jascha Heifitz and worked as his teaching assistant for 11 years. In 1980 he appointed her Master Assistant in charge of his highly respected violin class at the University of Southern California.

She has played to appreciative audiences throughout the world and has agreed to conduct a master class for four lucky contestants chosen from the preliminary round. The master class will be held on July 26.

Music nourishes the soul. It fills the heart with peace and serenity. Attending music competitions deepens one’s understanding of the art. Sitting through a number contestants' best performances and listening to them carefully, then choosing your favorites and discovering what the judges are looking for—or, in this case, listening for—sharpens one's senses and appreciation of the art.

The New Tang Dynasty International Chinese Violin Competition will be held from July 25-27 at New York's Town Hall. NTDTV will broadcast the competition by satellite to North America, Europe, Asia and Australia reaching a potential audience of over 200 million viewers.

Don’t miss this marvelous opportunity to hear the dulcet tones of Chinese artists playing some of the most beautiful Western music ever written.

For more information about the competition, including rules, regulations, schedule, etc please visit or website at