They have brilliant talents, and now beautiful instruments to make them shine, thanks to musical loans from the Canada Council for the Arts.
Established in 1985, the Musical Instrument Bank is a collection of donations and loans from instrument owners, and has grown to include 15 instruments, valued at over $27 million.
The prized violins, cellos and bows – some dating back to the 18th century – are made by such impressive names as Stradivari, Gagliano or Pressenda.
The legendary instruments don't remain behind glass, however, they are shared with deserving up-and-coming artists on a three-year basis.
After a rigorous audition and interview process in Ottawa, Montreal musician Chloe Dominguez was awarded an 200-year-old cello.
"I sincerely think that it's the dream of every player to play on such exceptional instruments," said Dominguez.
The 1824 Gagliano cello – an instrument that improves with age – is worth $350,000 and offers a priceless sound.
"They have a life. They have a soul. As a player you are influenced, and your playing changes according to the instrument you're playing, so it becomes almost like a relationship you build with your instrument," she said.
Dominguez is one of a select group of artists who has access to instruments like this, thanks to musician Denis Brott, founder of the CCA instrument bank.
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