Ok, Edvin Marton was playing a Stradivarius on stage. Of course it was play-back but on record it's the real thing. The violin, worth of approx 4 million dollars, is also on Winner's tour with Dima and Edvin. (And you thought all those bodyguards were for Dima? Think again, he has only one, the rest are for the Stradivarius!)
What makes this violin so special? The Stradivarius violins were built between 1666-1737. The one Edvin is playing is from 1697 and is from the so called Golden Era of the violin makers of Stradivari. No one seems to know exactly what makes them so special but what we know these are made out of three different woods: spruce, willow and marple. The wood has been treated with different minerals and vernice bianca, made of arabic gum, honey and egg whites. One explanation given is that during that period Europe was experiencing a Little Ice Age from 1645-1750. The temperatures were cooler all around Europe so the wood grew denser than usual growth rings. Another reason might be the wood came from the Croatian forests, where winters were cold and effected the wood's quality. Whatever the reason, the sound of these violins is the best in the world!
Many items are in collections in museums and musical institutes but some are loaned to artists. Besides Edvin Marton also other musicians play these instruments: Finnish Elina Vähälä, Jonathan Carney, Vadim Glutzman, Elise Båtnes and Leonidas Kavakos for example. In total there are less than 200 violins around and quite many of them are reported missing or stolen: 9.