Holstein Traditional Red Mendelssohn Violin Review
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Holstein Traditional Red Mendelssohn Violin Review

Is the Holstein Traditional Red Mendelssohn Violin the best choice for advancing students, or adults beginning to learn? Find out all of its merits, and shortcomings, in our expert review!

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Holstein Traditional Red Mendelssohn Violin

Holstein Traditional Red Mendelssohn Violin


4.6 out of 5 stars


Professionally tuned and immediately playable


4.5 out of 5 stars


Premium wood build with hand-applied varnish


4.7 out of 5 stars


Superior warm sound with good projection


4.8 out of 5 stars


A lot of value for its price range

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Table of Contents

Holstein Traditional Red Mendelssohn Violin Review
What’s Included?
Other Violins to Consider
Final Thoughts

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Holstein Traditional Red Mendelssohn Violin Review

Red Mendelssohn Overview

Holstein is a name deeply rooted in the history of violins, and there’s no better example to prove it than a Red Mendelssohn violin.


It’s a faithful copy of the violin Antonio Stradivari created in 1720 that even inspired other workshops to use red varnish on their instruments.

The modern version comes with hand-applied varnish on ten-year-old wood to produce a warm sound and pay tribute to the priceless original.

The Red Mendelssohn can create a brilliant yet powerful sound with a solid core that proves to be one of its most significant features.

Who is the Holstein Mendelssohn Violin For?

After reading this Holstein Red Mendelssohn violin review, you’ll realize that this instrument is best suited to intermediate and professional violinists.

If you’re an adult learner, this violin will give a lot of space for growth. It has a premium build quality that looks and sounds like a custom-made instrument.

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However, most teachers suggest that you’ll appreciate it more when it’s an upgrade from another model. Most violin novices find it out of their price range for a first violin but as a worthwhile investment if it is an upgrade.

Students also find this instrument to be ideal for solo performances and long practice sessions. It’s a light and responsive violin that you can use to fiddle and perform classical pieces due to its versatile and powerful sound.

What’s Included?

At first glance, you’ll notice that a Holstein Red Mendelssohn violin has a wonderfully crafted boxwood neck. The mix of two pieces of pearwood in the back with ebony trim shows that no compromises were made regarding its craftsmanship.

It also features Despiau Three Tree bridge and Thomastik Vision high-quality strings.

Should you decide to purchase the Holstein Red Mendelssohn violin, you’ll have to count on additional expenses like a bow, violin case, rosin, cloth, or anything else you might need.

Luckily, if you order it from the Fiddlershop, you’ll get personalized instrument reviews and recommendations based on your preferences.

A bow is one of the most essential accessories for any violin. The best reviews go to the Holstein Pernambuco bow and Holstein Three Star bow as they’re lightweight and easy to maneuver in this category.

Some violinists like to use the Holstein 1-Star Sandalwood bow as it creates a slightly warmer undertone.

Holstein Traditional Red Mendelssohn Violin

Features of Holstein Red Mendelssohn Violin

Delivered only as a 4/4 violin, it’s a full-size violin for adult players with accurate string separation and height measurements. The material used to create a Holstein Traditional Mendelssohn violin has to be 10-year dried, fine-grained maple or dry pearwood.

Luthiers carefully apply the varnish, especially on the two-piece back, to achieve the best flaming effect and red finish.

It has a well-aligned, slightly thicker bridge that comes from Despiau, and it’s a Three Tree model, famous for its first-class quality. You can choose among a variety of strings depending on the sound you want to achieve.

Most players go with Thomastik Vision to get the full and rounded tone with colorful overtones. This model comes with only one fine tuner. Should you want all four, you’ll have to make a specific order.

One of the potential downsides you might feel as soon as you start playing is a slightly thicker bridge made from boxwood. Some players find this hard to get used to and replace it with all-ebony fittings.

What draws players and enthusiasts to this particular model is the movie “The Red Violin.” The film follows the story of the real Red Mendelssohn Stradivarius violin only to underline its somewhat unusual properties.

After the film, the interest in this particular violin grew, especially when its current owner Elizabeth Pitcairn shared exciting stories about her instrument’s history.




Violin Highlights

  • Historic value
  • Powerful and solid sound
  • Premium quality varnish
  • Responsive instrument
  • Lifetime structural warranty

How to Get the Most of the Mendelssohn Violin

One of the best features of the Red Mendelssohn violin is the ability to play it right out of the box. It will arrive tuned and customized to your needs and performance style.

Holstein Mendelssohn Violin Key Points


What We Like

      • Premium quality instrument
      • Lovely lines and color
      • Rich overtones
      • Solid build
      • Great for adult learners and students


What We Don’t Like

      • Beginners may find a premium instrument challenging
      • Currently only available in one size


Other Violins to Consider

Of course, if you’re willing to compromise on the sound and get the whole outfit alongside your violin, the Soloist violin might be the right call. Given the price difference, you’ll get several useful accessories and a reliable instrument.

Fiddlerman Soloist is a violin built from durable 12-year-old wood and packed with the right equipment. In this case, it’s a matter of preference whether your focus is the instrument itself or the whole outfit. Between these two models, you can hardly make the wrong decision.

Another attractive alternative could be the Ming Jian Zhu 905 violin. It’s in the same price range as the Red Mendelssohn Violin, and it’s great should you want to get excellent quality violin in a smaller size.

With the Ming Jian Zhu 905 model, you won’t compromise on the sound and durability, as it is one of the best models for older children working on their playing technique.

Another fine-looking instrument with a rich history is the Holstein Soil Stradivarius violin that produces a rich and vivid sound in clear projection. If your budget is limited, it might be the next best thing after the Holstein Red Mendelssohn Violin.

If you’re inclined to copies of famous violins, you’ll be impressed with this one. It’s possible to customize the instrument to fulfill your specific needs by some of the best luthiers from the VSA award-winning violin workshop.

Final Thoughts: Is The Holstein Red Mendelssohn Violin the Best Choice for Your Next Step?

If you compare the Holstein Traditional Red Mendelssohn violin price and its quality, it becomes clear that it’s made for advanced and adult learners. With its flaming reddish-orange finish, it’s a dazzling violin even when seen from afar.

If you’re looking for a violin and nothing else, the Holstein Red Mendelssohn might be the best choice in its price range. As expected, this violin is not sound forgiving as it was made for the most skilled solo players.

But with enough practice, every learner can hone its lovely soft sound and enjoy its projection. A more budget-friendly option could be the Fiddlerman Soloist Violin Outfit since it comes in four varied sizes and is easy to play, but it all depends on what you’re looking for in an instrument.

In this Holstein Red Mendelssohn violin review, we’ve shown you everything that makes this violin the right choice for any adult learner that wants nothing but the best for themselves.

Holstein Traditional Red Mendelssohn Violin

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  • Ease of Use
  • Build Quality
  • Sound Quality
  • Value Factor


Overall Score:


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Senior editor at newviolinist.com

Steve Blundon is a former music teacher, author and publisher. Drawing on his experiences as an educator and music shop owner, Steve and his team share insight into the world of music and violins.

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