LIFEM: Digital | 5-11 November 2020

Eitan Hoffer

  • About
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Eitan Hoffer has been making baroque and classical bows for "early music" string instruments since 2005. 

His bows are played by numerous leading players in the "early music" field: these include members of ensembles such as Hesperion XXI, Concerto Copenhagen, Akademie für Alte Musik Berlin, English Baroque soloists, Gabrieli Consort and Players, Holland Baroque Society, Les Folies Francoises, Solamente Naturali, the Drottningholm Baroque Ensemble, Göteborg Baroque, The London Handel Orchestra, Les Musiciens du Louvre, Academy of Ancient Music, and many more.

Eitan received his musical training at the conservatory of Amsterdam, graduating in 1998. Since 2007 he has played baroque violin and lute with “Barrocade”– Israel’s leading Early Music ensemble, of which he was a co-founder. As a bow maker, Eitan has been studying and measuring original baroque and classical bows from the 17th and 18th centuries (measurements of original bows in museums include length, exact graduations of the stick, camber, weight, balance point, stiffness of the stick, materials used etc.) and is combining his musical skills and sensitivity, and knowledge to create concert bows tailored to the needs of the musicians and of the musical style of the period. 
 
Eitan’s interest lies not only in replicating the visual aesthetic of the original bow, but also in understanding the musical ideals that bows of different periods were made to serve.The playing characteristics of each bow are designed to echo the performance practices of the 17th and 18th centuries as derived from the historical sources and treatises of the period. 

All bows are made by hand, from natural and traditional materials, therefore each bow is a unique creation, with its own distinct personality. Although most bows are made to order, there is often a collection of bows ready for trying and available for buying. Bows are shipped after a personal consultation, either in person (during exhibitions or private appointments) or by e-mail and phone contact.Because of the unique needs of each musician, models can be adjusted to the needs of the player. 

All bows are thoroughly tested for their playing qualities either by Eitan himself (if for violin or viola) or by his professional colleagues (for cello, viola da gamba, and double bass bows) and a bow would only be shipped when approved to serve as a professional fine concert bow on stage.