A Guide to the Harpsichord by Ann Bond

By Ann Bond

This functional advisor treats the mechanics and evolution of the device and gives a survey of its literature. the writer discusses contact and procedure, together with articulation and fingering, and the problems focused on historic functionality practices. She additionally offers feedback on opting for and conserving a harpsichord.

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Extra resources for A Guide to the Harpsichord

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Although it is useful for melody-and-accompaniment textures and special effects, one should use it sparingly. One-manual harpsichords and spinets sometimes had a divided buff affecting treble or bass halves of the instrument, so that accompaniment figures in the lower half of the keyboard could be subordinated to a right-hand melody. Possibly you may have access to a harpsichord with a sixteen-foot (suboctave) register. As we shall see later, this register is of dubious authenticity, although it was popular on post-war revival harpsichords where it helped to shore up the often weak tone of the eight-foot registers.

Chapters 5, 6, and 8 explore the basis of harpsichord touch, explaining its mechanisms in relation to the musical effects you want to produce. These chapters are supported by a detailed study in chapter 7 of four pieces in commonly encountered musical styles. Chapter 11 contains guidance about buying music, reference to graded anthologies, and advice about facsimile editions. Throughout the book, many important and enjoyable individual works are singled out for comment. Suggestions for available editions are given in the relevant chapters.

Gerrit Klop, for figure 14. ANN BOND SILVERDALE The following reference system to pitch (Great C staff) is used in this book: Page 9 1 Setting the Scene That lovely instrument. Pier Francesco Tosi, Observations on the Florid Song (1723) I have always found the harpsichord irresistible, and I hope that before the end of this book you will catch some of my enthusiasm. I first encountered the instrument when I was a music student at Cambridge. My predominantly organ-playing background may have predisposed me, long before I had proper harpsichord lessons, to respond immediately to the most obvious aspect of the instrument's nature: its genius for musical line drawing, or counterpoint.

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