Fiddling with Life, by Steven Staryk & Thane Lewis

“… his uncompromising commentary uncovers music, personalities, violins and politics. A collector’s item.”
Classical Music, London
“… a story of just how extraordinary this man is…a no-nonsense approach to music.”
Literary Review of Canada
“… this unusual memoir has many unexpected observations…his playing impeccable and brilliant.”
The Seattle Times

Part autobiography, part biography, and part memoir, Fiddling with Life is not just about playing the violin. It is also about playing on the great violins – from Stradivari to del Gesu – about making music globally as a concertmaster, chamber musician and soloist…about teaching at numerous universities and conservatories and about the machinations, politics, and fate which “fiddled” with Steven Staryk’s life and career. Here is a behind-the-scenes look at the world of classical music, its institutions and its personalities.

ISBN 0889626138

Available at

A Retrospective: Vol. 1

Steven Staryk: A Retrospect Vol. 1,
Major Violin Concerti (2CD)

“To be quite blatant about it, the performance of the Paganini Concerto (live Jan. 1969) has to rank among the most intensely blistering renditions in my experience. If the Paganini might be construed as relatively “shallow” … Staryk in the Beethoven enjoys a singular breadth of vision I would have attributed to the Grumiaux/Beinum and Schneiderhan/Furtwoengler conception.”
Audiophile Audition (July 13, 2012)

With Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra (Live), Norddeutcher Rundfunk Symphony (Live), Toronto Symphony, London Festival Orchestra,, Vancouver CBC Orchestra (Live), Paganini No. 1 (Live), Beethoven (Live), Mozart No. 5 (Live), Shostakovich Op.99, Rondo Capriccioso.

Available at Centaur Records (CRC 3186/3187)
Or download on iTunes & Classics Online.

A Retrospective: Vol. 2Steven Staryk: A Retrospective Vol. 2,
Violin Gems

“No violinist makes a purer sound.”
Chicago Daily News
“He is one of the finest musicians ever to set bow to string.”
American Record Guide (June 2009)

Including: Meditation, Zigeunerweisen (Gypsy Airs), Caprice Viennois & other Kreisler Encores, Tchaikovsky, etc.

Available at Centaur Records (CRC 3203)
Or download on iTunes & Classics Online.

Steven Staryk: A Retrospective Vol. 3,

“… in Staryk’s violin recital at Wigmore Hall yesterday was Bach’s unaccompanied Chaconne. This was treated purely as music.”
The Times, London
“He is not only a great violinist, but a great artist.”
Het Parool, Amsterdam
“One tends to forget just how marvelous a sound Staryk can wrest from his instrument… He is so flexible a player that he oozes musicianship.”
The Toronto Star

With Concertgebouw Orchestra
Kenneth Gilbert: Harpsichord
Vancouver Baroque Orchestra

Concerti No.1 and No.2 (Live)
Partita No.2 (with Chaconne Live)
Sonatas BWV 1023 & 1020

Available at Centaur Records (CRC 3211)
Or download the album from iTunes & Classics Online.

Steven Staryk: A Retrospective Vol. 4,

“His playing was irreproachable – technically, tonally and musically.”
New York Times
“Staryk mesmerizes from start to end.”
The Montreal Gazette
“This recital remains one of the most memorable of the season.”
Daily Telegraph, London
“Staryk is among the great ones.”
Gramophone, London

Concerto No. 1 with Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra (Live)
Sonatas No’s 1&2 with Mario Bernardi: Piano

Available at Centaur Records (CRC 3222)
Or download the album from iTunes & Classics Online.

Steven Staryk: A Retrospective Vol. 5,
Works of Mozart

“His musicianship always directs the listener to the beauty of the music, making even the most technical etudes sound like stunningly-beautiful pieces. And wait until you hear what he does with Mozart.”
American Record Guide (June 2009)

With National Arts Centre Orchestra, Ottawa
Montreal CBC Orchestra (Live)
Oscar Shumsky: Viola
Mainly Mozart Orchestra (Live)

Concerto No. 3
Adagio K.261 (Live)
Rondo K.261 (Live)
Quintet K.516 Adagio Rondo (Live)
Sinfonia Concertante K.364 (Live)
K.516 (Live)

Available at Centaur Records (CRC 3223)
Or download the album from iTunes & Classics Online.

Steven Staryk: A Retrospective Vol. 6,
Beethoven & Bartok

“Listening to Staryk’s performance on this superb disc, one comes away with a feeling of awe and wonder at the sheer mastery. Here is violinistic wizardry.”
Stereo Review, USA
“The present set is simply stupendous from any angle. His playing brings to mind the young Heifetz.”
American String Teacher

Beethoven “Kreutzer” Sonata
Bartok Premiere Sonata (Live)
with John Perry: Piano

Available at Centaur Records (CRC 3224)
Or download the album from iTunes & Classics Online.

Beethoven: Violin and Piano Sonatas;
The Staryk-Perry Duo (3CD)

“Undoubtedly the most remarkable recent release of classical recordings in Canada, the Staryk-Perry complete Beethoven sonatas.”
~ Music Canada

“… of even greater importance is the impressive collaboration of Staryk and Perry in the complete sonatas for violin and piano by Beethoven. These two artists have developed a sensitivity, clean-lined crystalline-textured playing many intellectual listeners prefer…their set is highly competitive and is especially recommended.”
~ New York Times

“The Staryk-Perry duo is a partnership which fully measures up to the kinds of standards set by the foremost duos of our time.”
~ The Strad (London)

Available at Centaur Records (CRC 2803/2804/2805)
Or download on iTunesClassics Online.

Every Violinists Guide (CD)Every Violinists Guide

“The first of its kind ever to appear.”
~ EMI Records

“Steven Staryk has made a decisive and everlasting contribution to heighten pedagogic standards of today and of tomorrow!”
~ With sincere congratulations from Henryk Szeryng

“To Steven Staryk with my greatest admiration for his masterful playing of these beautiful caprices. Very cordially.”
~ Zino Francescatti

“Congratulations for this valuable idea and recording of pedagogical repertoire.”
~ David Oistrakh

The studies of Kreutzer, Dancla, Rode, Fiorillo, Kayser, Dont and Wieniawski are aimed at acquiring a mastership of the advanced technique of the fiddle, and here Staryk shows us just how easy it can be (?). His playing is beautifully controlled, exploiting all the facets of technique with care and perfection. Legato in separate bowing so smooth that we cannot hear the change of bow; spiccato and martelé so clear and rhythmic; double-stopping—most students’ nightmare—perfectly executed in La Cadenza. (Read the rest of Gramophone’s review)

 Available at Centaur Records (CRC 2744)