Who left her Stradivarius on a German train?

Who left her Stradivarius on a German train?


norman lebrecht

January 07, 2016

BERLIN, Jan 7 (Reuters) – An American violinist who left her $2.6 million 1727 Stradivarius in the luggage rack on a regional train in western Germany was “more than relieved”, police said, when officers retrieved it one minute before it left the station.

So who was it?

The train was running from from Mannheim to Saarbrücken.

The violin is the ‘General Dupont’, played throughout his career by Arthur Grumiaux. It was last sold at auction a year ago to an anonymous collector in China, after being on loan for several years to the US soloist, Jennifer Koh.

jennifer koh violin

So who’s playing it now? All the news report says is that it’s a woman violinist in her 20s. Ms Koh is 39.

Any clues?

UPDATE: Bild reports that the forgetful fiddler was Ms Koh. The police won’t confirm.

2nd UPDATE: Wrong Strad, right player here.

Ms. Koh is Musical America’s 2016 Instrumentalist of the Year.


  • Ross says:

    A little misleading to have that headline with a picture of Koh, an American violinist who did not leave a violin on a train.

    • Max Grimm says:

      From what I read, it seems it was Jennifer Koh. The article said she notified the police at Saarbrücken HBF, after having arrived there to perform with the Deutsche Radio Philharmonie at the Saarbrücker Congresshalle tomorrow.

    • norman lebrecht says:

      Is it?

      • Emil Archambault says:

        Yes, given that you state yourself that she does not play the violin anymore, and therefore has nothing to do with the story. This is misleading.

      • Ross says:

        Your original post said the Dupont Strad was left by an American violinist on a train in Germany.
        And you said that the violin USED to be played by Koh.
        In that case, it would have been unnecessary to have a picture of Koh, if she were not involved.

        But then your tune changed. It changed to suggest that the violin was now not the Dupont Strad and now it was Koh.

        Yes, misleading.

  • antony says:

    It was Koh (there’s an article in Bild), but it was not the 1727 Dupont: that was previously on loan to Koh, but she now plays with a different instrument.

  • Ziv Arazi says:

    A few corrections –
    First, The “General Dupont” was sold by our firm, and not in an auction.
    Also, Jennifer Koh has not played this violin since at least 2011.
    Lastly, the violin left on the train is NOT the “General Dupont”. The owner of the “General Dupont” is quite upset by this incorrect reporting.

    Ziv Arazi
    Rare Violins of New York

  • Brian Hughes says:

    Trying to understand who in their right mind would step off a train without her nearly 300-year-old Strad….