Obituary: Paul Bartel, violinist and luthier, 67

Posted on: August 14, 2019

“The Cincinnati-based violinist, educator and luthier Paul Bartel has died following a lengthy battle with cancer. He was 67,” reads an unsigned Tuesday (8/13) obituary in The Strad. “Bartel is best known as the long-time owner of the Baroque Violin Shop in Cincinnati, which he established with the ambition of supporting school music programs by providing high-quality instruments at low cost. The business, which became one of the largest of its kind in the country, continues to rent and sell stringed instruments to thousands of students in all 50 states. In 1995, Bartel purchased the 1850s-era former Masonic Lodge from the city of Wyoming [and] conducted a huge renovation at his own expense for what would become the nonprofit Wyoming Fine Arts Center. Today, nearly 1,000 people participate each week in various art forms taught by 30 professional teachers.… Bartel … often played his 1680 Stradivarius for schoolchildren, to recruit students on behalf of music teachers…. Memorials are designated to the Paul and Jan Bartel Scholarship Fund, which provides music education for underprivileged students.” Milan Dukic, executive director of the Wyoming Fine Arts Center, said Bartel “believed in the mission of having a community center and of having kids learn music.”

Posted August 14, 2019