Alitalia Airlines fully reimburses musician after damaging her 17th-century instrument

12 April 2018, 09:52

By Maddy Shaw Roberts

The owner of the 17th-century instrument says the Italian airline has ‘taken full responsibility’ for the damage done.

On 8 January this year, musician Myrna Herzog posted images of her viola da gamba and the damage it sustained after an Alitalia flight from Rio de Janiero to Tel Aviv.

The instrument, which Ms Herzog said is worth $200,000 (£148,000), was shown smashed in the photograph inside its case, which was also damaged.

Ms Herzog posted the photos to Facebook, along with the message: “Alitalia hates musicians … this is how Alitalia delivered to me my original 17th century Lewis viola da gamba … it was savagely vandalized.”

Ms Herzog has since published a new post on Facebook, saying the airline has now reimbursed her for the damaged instrument, and that they behaved with “great fairness”.

“Alitalia has taken full responsibility for the damage on my instrument and that has just reimbursed me for all the expenses resulting from the damage of instrument, case and bow,” she said.

“Thanks to the unfortunate accident, the company is also reviewing their policy regarding musical instruments. This could make Alitalia the preferred airline for musicians and music lovers. I will continue to fly Alitalia, as I always did.

“In the meantime, Luthier Shlomo Moyal is doing a wonderful restoration work on the Lewis viol (seen in the photos with its twin, cut from the same tree).”

Worried about flying with your instrument? Read these 10 handy tips from the Incorporated Society of Musicians.