The early piano has grown in popularity over recent years. It is now recognized as a window to the past and indispensable in revealing the sounds in the ears of eighteenth- and nineteenth-century composers. Yet rarely are two instruments more than superficially alike: the earliest instruments were constructed individually to the taste of each maker and often to that of his customer. Furthermore, pianos built in the same year by the same maker - even in a series -
often have not enjoyed the same standard of conservation: one may have its original strings and hammers, while another may have suffered the improper replacement of its entire action with parts designed for the modern Steinway. Many old pianos are still well-maintained and are in playable condition,
while others need extensive and careful restoration. Fulfilling a need for a comprehensive study of early pianos, Makers of the Piano 1700-1820 is the first book to present details about all known extant pianos built during the earliest years of the instrument's existence. Biographical information about each maker and such details about his instruments as the place and date of manufacture, style, compass, case description and measurements, strings, action, stops,
pedals, and present and former owners are given. Bibliographical references are listed separately for the individual pianos. Builders whose pianos have been lost are identified; however, anonymous pianos have not been included unless an attribution to a known maker is likely. Principal collections with their
catalogues and an exhaustive bibliography complete this valuable reference work.
`Professor Clinkscale's Makers of the Piano will take its place as a standard work, essential for scholars, craftsmen, museum curators, dealers, collectors and antiquarians'
Cyril Ehrlich, Times Literary Supplement
'a comprehensive study of early pianos which details all known surviving pianos built during the earliest years of the instrument's existence ... a hugely important guide for collectors, curators and those seriously interested in the history of the development of the piano.'
Tim Stein, Classical Music, May/June 1994
'Clinkscale has provided an important and unique addition to the reference shelf. No university-level library with a respectable music collection should be without this excellent new source. Very highly recommended.'
H.J. Diamond, Herbert H. Lehman College, CUNY, Choice, Feb '94
'most welcome book ... The author has been meticulous in providing references of origin for all the information published. The associated bibliography of books, articles and sources ... is an impressive testimony to her thoroughness, and particularly useful in its own right ... a very impressive first edition.'
Kenneth Mobbs, Galpin Society Journal
'shines as a bright ray of hope ... It is an important contribution to the study of the history of the piano, a book that will surely simulate and aid new research, a publication that fulfulls a long-acknowledged need.'
Nicholas Renouf, Yale University, Early Keyboard Journal 12 (1994)
'indispensable book ... The author's industry in compiling material ... is an impressive accomplishment.'
John Koster, Notes, December 1994
`Although clearly a book for specialists - fortepianists, keyboard scholars, curators, restorers, and collectors - the volume also offers a browser many attractive paths ... well-designed and attractively printed. Careful preparation and conscientious editing are evident throughout ... extraordinary achievement ... she has produced a reference work valuable not only for specialists, but also for students of performance practice in general.'
Malcolm S. Cole, Performance Practice Review, Spring 1994