"A table, a chair, a bowl of fruit and a violin; what else does a man need to be happy?"
"The majority of husbands remind me of an orangutan trying to play the violin."
-Honore de Balzac
"Life is like playing a violin solo in public and learning the instrument as one goes on."
"I inherited a painting and a violin which turned out to be a Rembrandt and a Stradivarius. Unfortunately, Rembrandt made lousy violins and Stradivarius was a terrible painter."
"If you take a violin, you can make it sound 50 different ways. Not just pizzicato and played by the bow, but ponticello, and harmonics, and tremolos. If you take an oboe and play it, there's about one way you can make it sound: like an oboe."
"Happiness is a thing to be practiced, like the violin."
"Violin playing is a physical art with great traditions behind it."
"Singing has always seemed to me the most perfect means of expression. It is so spontaneous. And after singing, I think the violin. Since I cannot sing, I paint."
"If we were all determined to play the first violin we should never have an ensemble. therefore, respect every musician in his proper place."
"I occasionally play works by contemporary composers and for two reasons. First to discourage the composer from writing any more and secondly to remind myself how much I appreciate Beethoven."
"If I don't practice one day, I know it; two days, the critics know it; three days, the public knows it."
"There is no top. There are always further heights to reach."
"I am not handsome, but when women hear me play, they come crawling to my feet."
"Genius is an overused word. The world has known only about a half dozen geniuses. I got only fairly near."