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Listen: The Red Violin visits the Central Coast with Elizabeth Pitcairn


The world-famous Red Violin arrived on the Central Coast this week and will remain through the weekend.

Internationally recognized violin virtuoso Elizabeth Pitcairn is the instrument's owner. She's in San Luis Obispo for a series of appearances, including opening night for the San Luis Obispo Symphony on Saturday.

Pitcairn says she enjoys playing the more intimate venues, like her scheduled appearance on Sunday at Edna Valley Vineyard. But, she says the violin—which she's named Felix, after the composer Felix Mendelssohn—prefers the big concert halls.

"That's what he was designed for," said Pitcairn. "He was built in the 1700s—1720—right when all the great halls were being built in Europe, and he's made to carry from several hundred yards to the last person in the last seat and cut over a 60 piece symphony orchestra."

Pitcairn says in a grand symphony hall is where the instrument really shines.

In addition to the symphony and vineyard events, Pitcairn will be teaching a free class Friday at the Community Baptist Church on Foothill Boulevard in San Luis Obispo.