My character is a highly skilled musician who has just graduated from Oberlin with a Masters of Music Education after majoring in String Performance. Since I am a bad person, and the violin is her life, it's getting stolen from her car while she drives to Chicago.
Her family is not wealthy, but they are very supportive of her music. I've read enough to know that the violin could have been anywhere from $2000 to $15000 as long as it suits her playing style. I think the violin is more suited to solo performance than orchestra performance. However, I am open to the possibility of her having two instruments since it looks like she would have had to perform in a variety of ensembles for her degrees. If she does, they are both stolen. How specific can she be when she talks to the police. I know that she would identify the instrument(s) by maker. Would they have serial numbers? What makers should I consider if she bought her (first) violin about ten years ago when she was leaving for a boarding high school? Would she be equally specific about her bow?
She will need to get a new violin at least temporarily. (I have yet to decide if the stolen instruments are returned eventually.) Would attending Oberlin prejudice her against electric violins? Am I right to think that she would want/need an acoustic violin if she is planning to audition for an orchestra?
Is it true that most violinists either play classical or folk, but not both? (I got that from some pledge-break on KCET, and nothing else seems to confirm or deny.)
Finally, what music selections could she play on the violin that would impress other musicians? I know what impresses me, but I have virtually no musical skills, and I'm looking for things that are impressive on a technical level.
Ways searched: Harrassed several musician friends, checked tags here, went through my own CD collection, watched La Corda d'Oro (which had some excellent info dumps, but I want them confirmed), wasted hours and hours on youtube, googled: violin, best, makers, music, colleges, protege, luthiers, and many other things