Friends of Square Pianos!
This is a sort of on-line club for anyone who owns, or would like to own, a square piano, or possibly a spinet. Or anyone who is just interested, possibly to learn a little more.
Please get in touch with me, David, on firstname.lastname@example.org with questions, comments, or just to say 'Hello'. This is a site for everyone, especially those new to the world of Square Pianos. And of course, we very much appreciate the support of those with more experience.
Update 18th August
Enchanting Music from Pizicar Galante
A Swedish Clementi?
I know that this site is supposed to be about square pianos (and spinets) but I do quite like music, and I would like to share this discovery with you. It is a CD by the young group Pizicar Galante, of the mandolin sonatas of Roberto Valentini and Pietro Boni.
Until now, the sound of the mandolin has been somewhat shrill for my taste, but these pieces are played on the Baroque (or Lombard) mandolin. This is a gut-strung instrument tuned in fourths, with a much gentler sound than the more common wire-strung mandolin. On this recording it is beautifully played by Anna Schivazappa with the other members of Pizicar Galante on theorbo, bass viol, and harpsichord. The result is an enchanting sound, unlike anything I have heard before.
Pizicar Galante are rehearsing for their second recording, of Scarlatti sonatas, and are seeking 'crowdfunding' support. Please join me in helping if you can.
A Swedish Clementi?
Well, no, not actually. But this fine piano does look very much like a Clementi. It is in Sweden, though, and was almost certainly made there. Between 1810 and 1818, which is about right for the date, the importation of pianos to Sweden was not allowed.
The basic design is the same as a Clementi, as is much of the decoration, but there are details which are 'not English'. These include the plain flat fronts to the natural keys, the sloping sides of the sharps, and the treatment of the curved ends of the nameboard. Also the neat presentation of the name is not in the English style.
But there is no name in the box! Any suggestions?
Thanks to Leif in Göteborg for sending us the pictures of this one.
Pierre Garnier (Bordeaux) 1792 For Sale
This elegant and unusual piano has recently been restored to a high standard, and is now offered for sale in Germany. Please see the Sale Page for details.
Some of you may have been following the construction - starting from a pile of wood - of this replica of a remarkable and important instrument. The spinet is now complete and playing well, and has gone to its new home in Scotland.
Please see the Spinet Page for the story.
We all love those beautiful English Spinets, and now they have a Page of their own, where I hope to encourage interest, ownership, and amateur makers.
Please take time to visit our sister website www.squarepianotech.com This is run by our Friend Tom Strange in America, and is rapidly growing into a treasure-store of permanent wisdom.
About the 'Webmaster' (David Hackett)
My only claim to respectability is that Carl Dolmetsch once offered to take me on as an apprentice. This was in 1962, when I had just shown him my first clavichord, and been his guest at Haslemere. However, he also advised me that it would be better to go to University, and I accepted his advice. Early Keyboard Instruments have therefore remained a hobby, and now happily retired, I am able to spend a bit more time enjoying them - and encouraging others, I hope..