Chelveston 2018

Saturday April 7th

 We all enjoyed our Spinet Day at Chelveston in 2017, and we look forward to another party in April 2018; we are organising this together with the British Clavichord Society.


  We are particularly pleased to announce that Derek Adlam has agreed to be our Guest of Honour and principal speaker.

    For fifty years and more, Derek has been a major figure in the early keyboard instruments world, as a maker and player.  We look forward to tales from his early years, his time at the Colt Collection, the Adlam-Burnett partnership at Finchcocks, and now at Welbeck, where he has been specialising in clavichords.



 We are also pleased to announce that Alexandra Cade will be joining us from the USA to make a presentation about amateur-made pianos in America 1790 - 1810.  These were important at a time when there were few imports, and the local industry was only just getting established.  The pianos show a variety of influences, particularly from Germany and England, and a surprising number have survived.


 There's more about Alexandra on the Spinet Page.


  In 2017 we assembled a remarkable collection of spinets, but for 2018 the scope will be wider.  As well as at least three spinets, there will be clavichords and two or three square pianos.  We are supposed to be Friends of Square Pianos, after all!

As before, there will be a substantial buffet lunch, as well as refreshments throughout the day.  The fee for the day will be £25.  The event is almost fully booked, but we have room for just a few more.  Please email David on

  The programme is in its early stages, but Derek's presentation will be split into about four conversational sections, with music in between.  We are also hoping that one of these interludes will be a recital on a newly-restored John Player spinet.

  We will be assembling a collection of about ten or a dozen instruments for us all to play and enjoy; some of the better players amongst us will be providing the musical interludes.  We will try to assemble a varied and representative group, which could include those below:

The earliest instrument will probably be the resident 1704 Blunt spinet, signed by Thomas Hitchcock.


A delightful instrument to play, the 1735 Thomas Hitchcock spinet number 1460.


Something different for most of us, a fine Dutch piano by Duwaer, 1830.


A fine modern clavichord in the classical manner by Zardini of Veron, 1989.

The papers presented at our 2017 Spinet Day are still available:

Harpsichords and Spinets shown at the In[...]
Adobe Acrobat document [1.2 MB]
The Spinets of the Hitchcock Dynasty - P[...]
Adobe Acrobat document [917.8 KB]
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