The Pascoli Brothers

Violin Making and Immigration in Twentieth-Century Brazil


  • Maria Da Gloria Leitao Venceslau
  • Rafael Sando


Brazil, Twentieth-Century, Violin Making


Maria da Gloria Leitao Venceslau and Rafael Sando’s article retraces through the narration of the lives of the violinmakers brothers Benvenuto and Guido Pascoli, part of the history of Brazilian violinmaking in the 20th century. The two authors aim to bring new insights on the topic through the presentation of part of the results of their research conducted over the years, contributing to define the context in which the first Brazilian luthiers were formed. 

The methodology presented is based on the reporting of news derived from newspaper articles, public and private archival material, and transcription of interviews with makers and musicians made by one of the two authors. The article ends with the presentation of selected string instruments, which allows us to reflect on the rich tradition of craftsmanship of the country. 

Author Biographies

Maria Da Gloria Leitao Venceslau

Maria da Gloria Leitao Venceslau is a musicologist working on the relationships between organology and economic studies. She obtained her Bachelor and Master’s degrees at the Faculty of Musicology in Cremona, University of Pavia, and she completed her PhD in Music and Performing Arts at Sapienza University of Rome. Her studies, as well as her recent publications, have been supported by several fellowships, such as Jamis and Galpin Publication Grant. Over the past few years, she worked continuously as a self-employed researcher on different organological projects, the most recent of which, involve the production of musical instruments in Tuscany from the sixteenth to the end of the nineteenth century. Now she is developing a Postdoc research project at the University of Southampton, United Kingdom.

Rafael Sando

Rafael Sando received his degree in Physics from the University of Campinas, Brazil (1984). After a short career in the electronics research field he decided to become a professional violin maker. He attended Karl Roy's workshops from 1993 to 1996. He currently makes and restores bowed instruments in his shop in Braganca Paulista, Sao Paulo, Brazil.




How to Cite

Leitao Venceslau, M. D. G., & Sando, R. (2019). The Pascoli Brothers: Violin Making and Immigration in Twentieth-Century Brazil. Violin Society of America Papers, 28(1), 74–93. Retrieved from