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History of Piano

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Momo Sugawara

on 10 November 2014

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Transcript of History of Piano


The Cristofori Piano in 1722
The Viennese Piano in 1800's
The Square Piano in 1769
the mainstay of the piano industry at the turn of the Century
The Avant-garde Piano in 1990
Avant-garde and experimental designs have made their way into pianos like everything else
The Modern Piano in 1857
as we know it in all its glory
The Upright Piano in 1798
upright pianos have seen many changes since they were first grand pianos set on end
The Art Case Piano in 1867
Bartolomeo Cristofori, Florence 1722.
The Cristofori Piano has a four-octave compass with the strings tuned in unison.
This piano is the smallest of the surviving instruments. Like the 1726 instrument, it features an inverted pin block with the tuning pins driven right through.
The strings are attached to the lower ends, which leaves more room for the action and also leads to increased tuning stability, as the action of the hammer is towards the nut rather than away from it.

Harpsichord manufacturers went to great lengths to try to produce a mechanism that would give them the desired dynamic response. But it was Bartolomeo Cristofali (Cristofori), of Padua, keeper of instruments in the court of Prince Ferdinand de Medici of Florence, who actually solved the problem.

The date of Cristofori's first 'piano' is unclear. The 1700 inventory of the musical instruments belonging to the Florentine court includes an " arpicembalo che fà il piano e il forte" (a harpsichord that can play quietly and loudly).

Bartolomeo Cristofori
The invention of the modern piano is credited to Bartolomeo Cristofori (1655–1731) of Padua, Italy, who was employed by Ferdinando de' Medici, Grand Prince of Tuscany, as the Keeper of the Instruments. He was an expert harpsichord maker, and was well acquainted with the body of knowledge on stringed keyboard instruments.

A piano's sound comes from striking a string held under tension with some form of hammer. The string and soundboard assembly had been in existence for many years prior to Cristofori's work, but Cristofori managed to develop an effective mechanism that took the downward pressure on a key and used it to 'project' a small hammer towards the strings. The 'action' of a piano is that mechanism.
Sebastian Lengerer, Kufstein 1793. Sebastian Lengerer originally worked in Kufstein, but moved to Vienna at the end of the 18th century.
This instrument is attractively decorated and the inside of the lid is covered by pre-printed patterned paper
(though this probably isn't the original). Pianos like this, made by craftsmen in small towns away from metropolitan influences, were somewhat out of date. The cabinetry is in a style fashionable some two decades earlier. Early Viennese pianos had black naturals and white accidentals. Here the accidentals are probably made of beech, covered with bone, and the naturals made of ebony. The keys are slightly narrower that those found on English pianos of the period, and the modern instrument. Viennese manufacturers were also inclined to produce attractively styled keyboards.

The sound made by a Viennese piano of this type is much lighter and more delicate than that of a modern instrument. The great Viennese composers,
Mozart, Beethoven, Haydn
and others, would have played the Viennese piano
Crombie, David. "History of the Piano." Piano Technicians Guild. MemberMax, n.d. Web. 21 Oct. 2014. <http://www.ptg.org/Scripts/4Disapi.dll/4DCGI/cms/review.html?Action=CMS_Document>.
"Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History." Made by Bartolomeo Cristofori: Grand Piano (89.4.1219). The Metropolitan Museum of Art, n.d. Web. 18 Oct. 2014. <http://www.metmuseum.org/toah/works-of-art/89.4.1219>.
"Classical Net - Timeline of Composers." Classical Net - Timeline of Composers. Classical Net, n.d. Web. 23 Oct. 2014. <http://www.classical.net/music/composer/dates/comp9.php>.
"Piano Physics." Piano Evolution. N.p., n.d. Web. 16 Oct. 2014. <http://www.unc.edu/~johannar/PHYS100/evolution/>.
"100 Greatest Classical Composers by Era | DigitalDreamDoor.com." 100 Greatest Classical Composers by Era | DigitalDreamDoor.com. DegitalDreamDoor.com, n.d. Web. 23 Oct. 2014. <http://www.digitaldreamdoor.com/pages/best-classic-comp2.html>.
"100 Greatest Classical Composers by Era | DigitalDreamDoor.com." 100 Greatest Classical Composers by Era | DigitalDreamDoor.com. DegitalDreamDoor.com, n.d. Web. 23 Oct. 2014. <http://www.digitaldreamdoor.com/pages/best-classic-comp2.html>.
"List of Works by Ludwig Van Beethoven." - IMSLP/Petrucci Music Library: Free Public Domain Sheet Music. N.p., n.d. Web. 23 Oct. 2014. <http://imslp.org/wiki/List_of_works_by_Ludwig_van_Beethoven>.
"Brahms Works List." Brahms Works List. N.p., Dec. 2013. Web. 23 Oct. 2014. <http://www.mjq.net/brahms/JBlist.htm>.
"Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart." Music History 102. N.p., n.d. Web. 18 Oct. 2014. <http://www.ipl.org/div/mushist/clas/mozart.html>.
"A Chronological History of the Piano - Piano Time Line." A Chronological History of the Piano - Piano Time Line. N.p., n.d. Web. 17 Oct. 2014. <http://www.concertpitchpiano.com/TimeLine.html>.
Crombie, David. "History of the Piano." Piano Technicians Guild. MemberMax, n.d. Web. 21 Oct. 2014. <http://www.ptg.org/Scripts/4Disapi.dll/4DCGI/cms/review.html?Action=CMS_Document>.
"Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History." Made by Bartolomeo Cristofori: Grand Piano (89.4.1219). The Metropolitan Museum of Art, n.d. Web. 18 Oct. 2014. <http://www.metmuseum.org/toah/works-of-art/89.4.1219>.
"History of the Piano." Your Comprehensive Guide to Everything about Pianos. N.p., n.d. Web. 17 Oct. 2014. <http://pianonet.com/all-about-pianos/history-of-the-piano/>.
"Piano Physics." Piano Evolution. N.p., n.d. Web. 16 Oct. 2014. <http://www.unc.edu/~johannar/PHYS100/evolution/>
The Clavichord in 1400's
The design of the clavichord later influenced how the rest of pianos would be built.
Spinets came also in this year and they were designed after the clavichord; the plausible source of origination belonging to an Italian inventor named Giovanni Spinette, according to Piano Technicians Guild.
The Harpsichord in 1521
Although historians are unsure about the year and inventor of the harpsicord, it is credited to an Italian named Hieronymus Bononiensis.
It had only four octaves and was light and weak.
marks the beginning of the Piano, although there were many keyboard instruments before
pianos were known for their light clean tone and quick action
developed their pianos into bigger more substantial instruments with a larger tone
The English Piano in 1830
Collard & Collard, London, c 1835. From 1822 to 1832, the company Muzio Clementi had set up was known as Clementi, Collard & Collard. However, upon Clementi's death the name was changed to Collard & Collard. Rococo instruments such as this are adorned with shell-like flourishes. The style was prominent in Europe during the 18th century and was revived in the middle of the 19th. This piano is from the revival.
One of the most important of the French piano makers in London was Sébastien Erard. His most important innovation was the 'double escapement' (or repetition) action mechanism. This action allows a note to be replayed without the key being fully released.
Erard's double escapement action works by holding the hammer close to the strings while the escapement mechanism re-engages itself ready for the next note. This means that the note can be quickly and easily re-played.
In 1822, Erard makes a 7-octave piano.
The Steinway Model D is the piano that the majority of contemporary concert pianists use in performance. The first D-style grand piano was made in about 1857, but it took a further ten years for Steinway to develop its unique rim-bending process.
This allowed the rim to be made from a single piece of laminated maple and is one of the features that helps to give the Steinway its particular sound and character. The first instruments were 7-octave, parallel-strung, the first overstrung Model D appeared in 1859.
with exceptional cases
The piano has always been a musical instrument first and foremost, but at the same time the need to win acceptance has meant
its appearance has had to take account of its surroundings. So pianos have always reflected the furniture styles of their day.
Once the internal layout of the piano, whether square, upright or grand, had become firmly established, the casework could be used to make an aesthetic statement. The true art-case piano is an art form in its own right.
Bösendorfer, Vienna 1867. This instrument is one of the world's most famous pianos, and is known as the 'Emperess Eugénie' Bösendorfer. It was designed by Viennese craftsman Hans Makart. The casework is mahogany, inlaid with kingwood, and the legs and the cherubs on the end-cheeks are hollow cast bronze.
Broadwood, London 1879. In 1879 the painter Edward Burne-Jones was asked by a friend, William Graham, to design a piano which he could give as a wedding present to his daughter Frances. Burne-Jones commissioned Broadwood to build a grand piano with a traditional harpsichord-like shape, supported by a trestle stand, that would be in keeping with the Arts and Crafts movement he was establishing with the craftsman and poet William Morris. Burne-Jones himself painted the lid, which shows mother earth.
Steinway, New York, circa 1877.
This is one of the finest examples of the art-case piano. It is based on the7 1/4 octave Model D, and is made of burred walnut and satinwood.
Known as a 'Centennial Grand', it was built in 1876, 100 years after the American Declaration of Independence.
Bösendorfer, Vienna 1990.
Designed for Bösendorfer by the world-renowned Austrian architect Hans Hollein, this piano employs a modern style based on strong color and extensive use of brass.
This piano has no prop stick for the lid. It has an

electric lid opener!
The Upright grand piano has strings that run vertically.
In effect it is a grand piano with the strings, soundboard and frame assembly raised up to the vertical and the action adapted accordingly.
Early upright grand pianos had the strings rising straight up from the keyboard. From the end of the 18th century, however, manufacturers started to bring the whole broad end of the grand almost down to the ground.

In 1795, Johann Jakob Konnicke makes a 6-octave, 6-keyboard piano, Vienna
Unknown, probably Vienna c1835, giraffe piano.
The giraffe piano was invented in Vienna and first appeared around 1798.
This instrument could have been made by Schlimbach, Seuffert, Ehrlich or possibly Wachtl, all keen exponents of the giraffe piano.
Leopold Sauer, Prague c1805, pyramid piano.
Built in Prague by Leopold Sauer, this pyramid piano is fairly typical of the genre, although it is somewhat unusual to find a clock mounted in the upper casework.
This instrument marks a revival in the pyramid shape, which originated with Christian Ernst Friederici and his fellow piano makers in the first half of the 18th century, and which died out around 1760.
The origins of the square piano can be traced directly to the clavichord, with which it shares a rectangular (not square) shape and basic layout of strings and soundboard. The keyboard is positioned along one of the broad sides, and the strings run horizontally at right angles to the keys.
In 1784, William Southwell makes a 5 1/2-octave square piano, according to concertpitchpiano.com.
Johannes Zumpe & Gabriel Buntebart, London 1769. This square piano from Johannes Zumpe used his English single action with no escapement and no check, limiting its performance somewhat.
This piano was typical of the basic, relatively low-cost instruments (around 15-20 pounds)
with which Zumpe made his fortune. Zumpe and Gabriel Buntebart, a fellow German, were partners from 1768 to 1778. J.C. Bach, who was a friend of Buntebart's, used a similar instrument for the first public piano recital, in 1768. With the lid open the modifiers and their levers can be seen to the left side of the instrument.
Steinway & Sons, New York, 1871. The way in which the
square piano grew in size
can be clearly seen in this powerful instrument from Steinway & Sons.
Even the lid weighs more than those of most grand pianos. This design, with a full iron frame, is probably the most powerful type of square piano ever built.
When the lid is raised, the sound is reflected directly at the player, further enhancing the power of the instrument--though not to the benefit of an audience, as with the lid of a grand.
Johann Sebastian Bach
(1685 - 1750)
Ludwig Van Beethoven
(1770 - 1827)
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
(1756 - 1791)
Greatest Composers
Johannes Brahms
(1833 - 1897)

Romantic - Early 19th Century
Baroque - Late 16th-18th Century
Frederic Chopin
(1810 - 1849)

Franz Liszt
(1811 - 1886)

Achille-Claude Debussy
(1862 - 1918)
Romantic/Modern - Late 19th Century
German composer, organist, harpsichordist, violist, and violinist of the Baroque period.

Examples of His Works
The Well-Tempered Clavier, Books 1 and 2 (BWV 846–893)
The 15 Inventions and 15 Sinfonias (BWV 772–801)
Three collections of dance suites:
the English Suites (BWV 806–811)
the French Suites (BWV 812–817)
the Partitas for keyboard (BWV 825–830)

according to imslp.org
Johann Sebastian Bach (1685 – 1750)
German composer and pianist. A crucial figure in the transition between the Classical and Romantic eras in Western art music, he remains one of the most famous and influential of all composers.

Examples of His Works
Nine symphonies
Nine concertos
A variety of other orchestral music
32 celebrated sonatas
Beethoven's work for solo piano includes many one-movement pieces, more than twenty sets of variations, most unpublished in his lifetime or published without opus number, and over thirty bagatelles, including the well-known Für Elise.

Ludwig Van Beethoven (1770 - 1827)
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (1756 - 1791)
Mozart was an Austrian composer. When he was four, he could learn a piece of music in half an hour. At five he was playing the clavier incredibly well. At six he began composing, writing his first symphonies at the age of eight, according to ipl.org.

Examples of His Works

Piano Sonata
Violin Sonata
Piano Concerto

according to imslp.org
Frédéric François Chopin, born Fryderyk Franciszek Chopin, was a Romantic-era Polish composer.

Examples of His Works
Frederic Chopin (1810 - 1849)
Franz Liszt (1811 - 1886)
Franz Liszt, officially Franz Ritter von Liszt, was a 19th-century Hungarian composer, virtuoso pianist, conductor, teacher and Franciscan tertiary.

Examples of His Works
Sacred choral works
Secular choral works
Symphonic poems
Chamber music
Various original works
Trois études de concert [3 pieces]
1 Il lamento
2 La leggierezza
3 Un sospiro
Johannes Brahms was a German composer and pianist. Born in Hamburg into a Lutheran family, Brahms spent much of his professional life in Vienna, Austria, where he was a leader of the musical scene.

Examples of His Works
Piano Sonata
Piano Trio
Four Ballads for Piano
Piano Quartet
Piano Concerto
String Quartets
Johannes Brahms (1833 - 1897)
Achille-Claude Debussy (1862 - 1918)
French composer. Along with Maurice Ravel, he was one of the most prominent figures associated with Impressionist music, though he himself intensely disliked the term when applied to his compositions.

Examples of His Works
Clair de Lune
Reflets dans l'eau

by Momo Sugawara
History of Piano
Works Cited
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