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Richard Grünke & Söhne GmbH_Bow Maker

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Richard Grünke & Söhne  GmbH is a renowned brand of bow. The company was found in 1996 by Mr Richard Grünke together with his sons, Mr. Klaus Söhne and Thomas Grünke, who are universally recognized as some of the best bow makers today.

Richard Grünke & Söhne GmbH bows’ sound projection are excellent, they have unexpected large volume, the edge of sound, and very good feeling of vibration. Suitable for Solist, Chamber of Orchestra players.

Richard Grünke & Söhne GmbH is a renowned brand of bow. The company was found in 1996 by Mr Richard Grünke together with his sons, Mr. Klaus Söhne and Thomas Grünke, who are universally recognized as some of the best bow makers today.

Richard Grünke & Söhne GmbH bows’ sound projection are excellent, they have unexpected large volume, the edge of sound, and very good feeling of vibration. Suitable for Solist, Chamber of Orchestra players.

The following list of well known international soloists represent musicians who play with Grünke bows in their concerts or at recording sessions. The list can’t be completed as string players purchase Grünke bows in renowned shops all over the world. However the quality the soloists mentioned below speaks for itself. In alphabetical order:

David Geringas

Frans Helmerson

Gidon Kremer

Mischa Maisky

Julian Rachlin

Vadim Repin

Victor Tretjakov

Thomas Zehetmair

Jing Zhao

Grigori Zhislin

Frank Peter Zimmermann

Tabea Zimmermann

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Richard Grünke Biography

Richard Grünke, born in Poland in 1930, ended up in the upper Vogtland in 1944 during the turmoil at the end of WWII. He began his apprenticeship as a bow maker in 1945 with Edwin Herrmann in Schönlind, then completed it in the H.R. Pfretzschner workshop in Markneukirchen between 1946 and 1948.

He remained in this workshop until 1950, when he went to Berlin to work for Alfred Leicht. These years in Berlin were to augment the training he had received in the H.R. Pfretzschner workshop and had an important effect on his later working career. In 1952 he moved to Bubenreuth and joined the Roderich Paesold workshop. After completing his masters examination in 1957, the Peasold firm began generally stamping his bows with Richard Grünke.

The silver mounted frogs received an additional stamp in of a shield which enclosed the initials “R G”. Gold mounted frogs received a stamp with a bow and arrow.

The style of his early bows was clearly influenced by the Pfretzschner workshop. His bows took on a much more personal appearance over time as the work of French bow makers like A. Lamy and E. Sartory came to influence his ideas. In 1975 Richard Grünke set up his own business in the workshop of the bow maker Fritz Müller, who had died in 1974. As of this point in time, he used his existing Richard Grünke stamp as well as now always using a coat of arms stamp with a drawn bow and arrow on the frog. In recognition of his work he was called on to participate on the jury panel in international bow making competitions.

In 1996 he founded a new company with his two sons, Klaus and Thomas, called “Richard Grünke & Söhne GmbH”, in which he still plays an active role.

 

 Klaus Grünke Biography

Klaus Grünke learned the craft of bow making from his father Richard Grünke, in Bubenreuth between 1975 and 1978. The period 1980 to 1982 was an important stimulus for his future career. During this time he worked for Hans Weisshaar in Los Angeles, focusing intensively both on restoration techniques and the study of older master bows. After returning to Bubenreuth he continued to work in his father’s workshop, using his own name on the bows.

In 1985 he took his master’s examination in bow making under the auspices of the HWK Nuremberg. Since 1996 he has been co-owner of the family workshop “Richard Grünke & Söhne GmbH” in Langensendelbach.

He successfully participated in international competitions: among others, in 1980, in Hempstead, N.Y., he was awarded two gold medals and in 1983 in Kassel, he received the overall silver medal. Later on he has been called to serve on the jury of numerous bow making competitions all over the world.

In addition to bow making, Klaus Grünke has devoted himself to the study of various theoretical aspects of his field. He has written a number of articles in both trade magazines and books, sharing the results of his research. In the year 2000 he wrote and published together with his colleagues C. Hans Karl Schmidt and Wolfgang Zunterer the encyclopaedia “German Bow Makers”.

He also plays an active and leading role in the IPCI, International Pernambuco Conservation Initiative, which was founded by bow makers from all over the world in Paris 2001. The major aim of the initiative is the conservation and the introduction of sustainable use for the scarce but for bow making inevitable Pernambuco tree. www.ipci-deutschland.org or www.ipci-usa.org

 

His violin and viola bows are primarily made following the models of Dominique Peccatte, Francois Xavier Tourte and Nikolaus Kittel. The cello bows are made in the style of Francois Nicolas Voirin, although he also uses the Nicolas Maire, Nikolaus Kittel and Francois Xavier Tourte models. His bows are usually stamped KLAUS GRÜNKE. He also offers detailed copies of old master bows, these bows have a small K.G. stamped on the seating for the frog.

In his quest to improve the playing quality of his bows he has developed a special working relationship with violinist Vadim Repin and the cellists David Geringas and Mischa Maisky.

 

Thomas Grünke Biography

Thomas Grünke did his apprenticeship as a bow maker in Bubenreuth with his father, Richard Grünke, from 1978 to 1981. He continued to work in his father’s workshop through 1995.

Since January 1996 he has been a partner in the business “Richard Grünke & Söhne GmbH” in Langensendelbach along with his father and his brother Klaus.

Thomas Grünke completed his master’s exanimation under auspices of the HWK Nuremberg in 1987.

Thomas Grünke has developed a number of different dimensions in his work; besides normal repair work he has devoted himself to the complicated restoration of valuable older bows as well as the making of new bows.

The detailed experience he has gained in restoration work has had a great influence on his new making.

His violin, viola and cello bows show the general influence of maker like D. Peccatte, F.N. Voirin and E. Sartory. Some of his bows base on the model of J.R. Lafleur.

His bows are usually stamped THOMAS GRÜNKE.

 

 
 
 
 
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