French musician robbed of €1 million cello at knifepoint in Paris suburb

Credit: France Bleu


An award-winning French musician was robbed at knifepoint of her 18th-century cello, worth more than a million euros, outside her home in a Paris suburb on Thursday evening.

“Help! My cello was stolen this evening in a red dark flightcase,” soloist Ophelie Gaillard wrote in a Facebook post, accompanied by pictures of the instrument.

Gaillard told police that her attacker also forced her to hand over her mobile phone before fleeing on foot in the northeastern suburb of Pantin.

On Facebook she wrote that the cello, which was loaned to her by CIC bank and is valued at nearly 1.3 million euros, was made by Italian luthier Francesco Goffriller, son of Venetian master cello-maker Matteo Goffriller.

The cello case also contained her bow, which she said was the work of acclaimed 19th-century French bowmaker Jean Pierre Marie Persoit.

In 2003, Gaillard was named the best new instrumental soloist at the French classical music awards.

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