This beautifully written history of the piano is at once remarkably informative and uniquely engaging. Performer and historian Richard Burnett traces the development of the piano from its origins to the present day, drawing on keyboard instruments from his internationally known collection, at the Finchcocks Museum in Kent, England. Sixty-one of these instruments, including organs, harpsichords, clavichords, and a wide range of pianos, feature in what amounts to a ground-breaking social history of the piano. Richard Burnett is an international concert pianist who acquired Finchcocks, the beautiful Georgian mansion in 1971 as a home for his collection.
His fascinating book ingeniously interweaves the biographies of the pianos with the history of the various manufacturing firms and the remarkable lives of some of the builders and the musicians associated with them, all set against the vividly depicted social backdrop of the periods under review. In the second part of his book, the author looks particularly at how the development of the instruments has influenced the output of the classical composers - Mozart, Haydn, Beethoven, Weber, Schubert and others.
The book also includes a complimentary CD, in which the music of 33 of the Finchcocks period instruments can be heard being played by Richard Burnett and Steven Devine.
Hardback. Edges of dustjacket slightly worn, but otherwise In good condition.