ONE OF THE FIRST FRENCH ROMANTIC PIANOS

Inauguration on February 7,8,9 2020

A PIANO OF THE FIRST FRENCH ROMANTISM ACCESSIBLE TO PIANISTS

There is no  collection of period pianos accessible to keyboardists in Paris; t he period pianos colleges are reserved for students, museum collections programmed to pianists. Pianists therefore do not have the tools to improve their skills once their studies are completed ...

A true paradox!

This Erard 1806 square piano allows pianists to deepen their knowledge of romantic aesthetics and to make us discover an extremely diverse sound world.

This 1806 square piano is a great tool for rediscovering the vast pianistic repertoire of the 1st Empire, still largely unknown. The multiplicity of sound registers of the instrument will notably allow to update the taste for the picturesque and the experiments of timbre and color specific to the works of the great "Parisian" pianists, French and not, of the time, such as Dussek, Steibelt, Louis Adam, Hélène de Montgeroult, Hyacinthe Jadin, etc.

The instrument was bought by M. Méreau for Mme Fourcade in Paris on June 18, 1806. The instrument belonged to Madame Jeanne Hatto (1879-1958), singer in the first half of the 20th century, then to the Merlin family.

It was acquired by La Nouvelle Athènes, Center for Romantic Pianos in March 2018, Christopher Clarke delivered the restored piano for its inauguration on February 7, 2020 at the Salle Cortot in Paris.

We need to continue its restoration and continue collecting donations.

RESTORATION BY THE MASTER OF ART CHRISTOPHER CLARKE

We are launching a donation campaign up to € 6,000 to restore the damaged pieces discovered during the restoration.

 

Indeed, after measurements, disassembly of the piano by the Master of Art Christopher Clarke, it appears a restoration carried out at the end of the XIXth century, which replaced the pedals by kneepads, which transformed the fittings of bassoon games and lute and altered the keyboard.

 

Christopher Clarke recommended in July 2018 "to reconstitute a pedalboard; it would be easy to leave the knee pads in place, as witnesses of an intervention which deserves its place in the history of the rediscovery of the fortepiano. Nevertheless, I suggest, for reasons of musical authenticity, to reconstitute a pedalboard and to change the fittings of the bassoon and the lute playing. "

 

Christopher Clarke found other damaged or damaged parts as the restoration progressed; a plinth to be rebuilt in mahogany wood from Santo Domingo, the hammer heads to be refilled with skins, the varnish to be redone with the buffer varnish ... These complications lengthened the restoration time by 50%.

 

The concern to present a piano in perfect condition within the general interest collection, leads La Nouvelle Athènes to collect € 6,000 extra to cover these costs.

 

The Erard 1806 square piano was inaugurated on February 7 in Salle Cortot and on February 8 & 9, 2020 in Reid Hall in Paris.

RENAISSANCE OF A HERITAGE FOR PIANISTS AND THE PUBLIC

This Erard 1806 square piano has 4 stops (lute, forte, celestial, bassoon) which bring a diversity of exceptional sound colors, the culmination of an aesthetic of feelings - terrifying or poetic -, witnesses of an era turned upside down by the Revolution, the Terror, the Napoleonic Empire…

 

By giving, you allow

  • to preserve the French instrumental heritage,

  • pianists to access an extremely rare instrument, the founder of the pianistic game,

  • to the association La Nouvelle Athènes - Center of Romantic Pianos to make progressively accessible a collection of general interest, of pianos of time (French, Germanic, English) covering the romantic repertoire 1750 - 1850…

 

You are participating in an avant-garde movement around a new romantic piano culture ...

 

The restorations of the Sistine Chapel in Rome have opened up new chromatic perceptions and a renewed understanding of the Renaissance, as well the rediscovery of the original sounds of period pianos helps to place themselves in the aesthetics and in the gestures of composers and pianists of the romantic era…

Erard 1806 Cordes et claviers
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Erard 1806 C.Clarke - copie
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Erard 1806 Cordes et claviers - copie

Dated 1805 on the soundboard, 1806 on the counter

Range: FF-c5, fa to do, 69 notes

Mechanical with double pilots

4 knee pads: lute, forte, celestial (FF-d3), bassoon (FF-c1)

Bi-strings: 9 brass choirs, 16 brass choirs, 44 iron choirs

Gauges marked on the soundboard at the ankles

Length: 1615 mm (without underbody moldings)

Width: 592 mm (without underbody moldings)

Body height: 235 mm (without cover)

Keyboard width: 921 mm

Width 3 octaves: 484 mm (fa to fa); 483 mm (do to do)

FF string length: 1474 mm

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© 2018 La Nouvelle Athènes - Centre des Pianos Romantiques 

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