Respected concert violinist/child prodigy Stanley Plummer began playing his instrument at the early age of 4, and made his first public performance two years later. By the time he hit his early twenties, Plummer was performing (and winning musical competitions) the world over, including the Associated Concerts Bureau contest at Carnegie Hall in 1948, the U.C.L.A. Young Artists' Competition in 1950, first prize in the National Federation of Music Clubs Auditions in 1951, and in 1955, the Sir Arnold Bax Medal in Manchester, England, for outstanding performance of contemporary music. In addition, Plummer also served in both the Army and Navy orchestras, and lent his talents to studio orchestras, playing violin in about 1,500 motion picture and television program soundtracks and record albums (including releases by Harry Chapin, Natalie Cole, Neil Diamond, Frank Sinatra, and Dionne Warwick, among many others). In addition to his fine playing and impressive resumé, the instrument make/model that Plummer used received quite a bit of attention as well -- it was made in Milan in 1745 by Giovanni Battista Guadagnini (a student of Stradivari). The rare Guadagnini instrument had been purchased in 1914 by renowned Pasadena violinist Vera Barstow (subsequently, one of Plummer's teachers), who played it on the front lines during World War I. Plummer acquired the violin at around 23 years of age, using it in his debut recital as Occidental College's "young artist of the year." On November 11, 2000, Plummer passed away in Santa Monica, CA, at the age of 73, due to complications from Parkinson's disease.
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