BOOK 1: THE PIANO HANDBOOK In this book McCombie explains how Bartolomeo Cristofori changed a Harpsichord in to a piano


In this book McCombie explains how Bartolomeo Cristofori changed aHarpsichord in to a piano over three hundred years ago. McCombie goeson describing how when Cristofori was angry and frustrated he bangedon the keys of the Harpsichord. Cristofori found that they didn’trespond with satisfactory crashing chords. By the year 1700 Cristoforichanged the Harpsichord so that he could use two strings for each noteand a set of leather covered hammers to strike them. He then developeda key mechanism to control the force of the hammers.

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McCombie uses a lot of illustrations to describe the mechanisms withina Harpsichord and a piano. In the next chapter talks about buying apiano. He suggests that the majority of music teachers have little orno experience in judging pianos. McCombie says that a tuningtechnician is the best-equipped person to talk to about buying apiano. He also recommends that buying by name is no longer a good ideaas some well known makers have been taken over by other manufacturers.

I think that this is articulately written and is aimed at people thathave very little knowledge on the piano. Although this book has noinformation on playing the piano, I think it would be of great valueto someone that wanted to start playing. I think this book is of valueto my work because it explains the history of the piano in greatdetail.


In this book Closson talks about the Clavichord which is the earliestform of stringed keyboard instruments. He then goes on to talk aboutthe Dulcimer which is also known as Dolce Melo in Italy, Backbrett inGermany, and Ty…


McCombie, Ian, The Piano Handbook, (Great Britain, 1980)

Closson, Ernest, History Of The Piano, (London, Elek Books Ltd, 1947)

Mach, Elyse, Great Pianist Speak For Themselves, (Great Britain,Robson Books, 1981)

Wainwright, David, The Piano Makers, (London, Hutchinson & Co Ltd,1975)

Scholtt, Howard, Encyclopaedia Of The Piano, (New York & London,Garland Publishing Inc, 1996)

Hollis, Helen, The Piano, (Great Britain, Biddles Ltd, 1975)

Gill, Dominic, The Book Of The Piano, (London, Phaidon Ltd, 1981)

Crombie, David, Piano, (UK, Balafon, 1995)

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, Prod. Klavierwerke, Perf. Andras Schiff,London, The Decca Record Company Ltd, 1992

The Piano Music of John Field, Prod. Lucena, Gef and David Wilkings,Perf. Lorna Fulford Finchcocks, Gouldhurst, Kent, 1990


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