FILE - In this March 8, 2017, file photo, violinist Mira Wang plays the Ames Stradivarius violin in New York. After a meticulous restoration that took more than a year, the Stradivarius violin that was stolen from violinist Roman Totenberg is about to return to the stage. Wang, a former student of Totenberg's, will play the instrument at a private concert in New York on Monday, March 13, 2017. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig, File)

Stradivarius heard for first time since 1980 theft

By VERENA DOBNIK
Associated Press

NEW YORK (AP) -- The three daughters of renowned violinist Roman Totenberg have heard the sound of their late father's Stradivarius for the first time nearly four decades after it was stolen.

The prized 18th century instrument came back to life on Monday at a private Manhattan concert, tucked under the chin of Totenberg student Mira (MEE'-rah) Wang.

The violin disappeared in 1980 after a Totenberg performance in Cambridge, Massachusetts. The thief was an aspiring violinist who kept the Stradivarius hidden, patching some spots with glue. After his death, his ex-wife alerted authorities.

The instrument was returned to the family in 2015 by Preet Bharara (buh-RAH'-ruh), then the U.S. attorney in Manhattan.

Wang immigrated from China to study with the Polish-born Totenberg, who died in 2012 at age 101.