VC Artist Alexandra Conunova Reunited with her Guadagnini Violin
The €2 million instrument has been returned after it was seized by Moldova’s Chișinău Airport customs almost two months ago
After weeks of working to ensure the return of her violin, Alexandra was finally reunited with the c. 1785 “Ex- Ida Levin fecit Turino” violin by G.B. Guadagnini a day before Christmas Eve.
Alexandra’s efforts included creating an online petition and boarding several flights to meet with those who could help her case.
On loan from an anonymous Swiss sponsor, the “Ex- Ida Levin” violin has been played by Alexandra for four years and she had always traveled with it “under a contract with the sponsor, formalized by a Swiss law firm.” She had never faced issues traveling with the violin until October this year.
Set to fly from Moldova to Moscow on October 22, Alexandra was detained by airport officials who requested she declare the violin through a violin passport which needed to be confirmed by an authorized luthier.
Later, it was revealed that the passport involved an incorrect statement written by the luthier stating that the violin represented “historical and cultural” significance for Moldova. On this basis, the violin was seized by customs and a criminal case was filed “for attempted smuggling.”
As reported by the Moldovan news agency Ziarul de Gardă (ZdG), the return of the violin was announced by the Prosecutor’s Office for Combating Organized Crime and Special Cases (PCCOCS).
“After reviewing the legal procedures and assessing the documents presented on Wednesday, December 22, 2021, the violin was lifted in October 2021 at Chișinău Airport and has been returned to the person who presented the authenticated documents,” the PCCOCS stated.
“Today, at the presentation of the authenticated documents and the completion of the required legal procedures, the musical instrument was released to the person,” the statement continued. “The criminal investigation continues, in order to order an objective solution regarding the investigated case.”