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About Violins of Hope

Violins of Hope is a collection of restored violins that were played by Jewish musicians during the Holocaust. These instruments have survived concentration camps, ghettos, pogroms, and many long journeys to tell remarkable stories of injustice, suffering, resilience and survival.

The Founders

Amnon & Avshalom Weinstein

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AMNON WEINSTEIN has spent the last two decades locating 
and restoring violins that were played by Jewish musicians during the Holocaust. Amnon dedicates this important work to 400 relatives he never knew. These grandparents, uncles, aunts, and cousins stayed behind in Eastern Europe after Amnon’s parents, Moshe and Golda, immigrated in 1938 to Palestine, where Moshe opened a violin shop. After the war, Moshe learned that his entire family—400 in all—had been murdered during the Holocaust. Amnon maintains his violin workshop in Tel Aviv, Israel.

 

 

Amnon's son, AVSHALOM, began working with his father in 1998 as a violin-maker and restorer of violins, violas, and cellos of the highest level. Avshalom is trained in the tradition of the Italian Cremonese School of violin-makers and the French school of restoration. Avshalom opened his own workshop in Istanbul in 2009, where he continues the family tradition.

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Since 2006, these restored instruments have been exhibited and played by leading orchestras and music festivals in Europe and America. Besides concerts, a strong component of the project is to exhibit the violins and bring them to schools and other organizations to experience these amazing instruments and their stories.

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Both father and son have located the violins that were played by Jews in the camps and ghettos, painstakingly piecing them back together so they could be brought to life again on the concert stage. Although most of the musicians who originally played the instruments were silenced by the Holocaust, their voices and spirits live on through the violins that Amnon has lovingly restored.

 

They call these instruments the Violins of Hope.