10 September 1941 – 24 September 2014
Keyboard player
De Clavicordio V
September 28, 2007

Proceedings of the International Clavichord Society

Magnano, 5–8 September 2001
Edited by Bernard Brauchli, Alberto Galazzo, Ivan Moody
Published by Musica Antica a Magnano
328 pages
55 black & white illustrations
ISBN 88-900269-2-8
Price (postage included): €55,00

In September 2001 Christopher returned to Magnano, in the hills between Turin and Milan, to participate in the meeting of the International Clavichord Society of which he is, with Bernard Brauchli, co-chairman. The biennial symposium began in 1993 and involves makers — who arrive with and demonstrate their instruments — and musicologist-players who perform and present papers on the clavichord repertoire. These are then gathered together in the journal De Clavicordio which appears in the fallow year between two Magnano meetings.

Christopher brought to the conference the fruits of his researches into Danish music-making from the early eighteenth century into the first third of the next. This period saw the transformation of the instrument from the humble learning-aid, to which King Christian IV put his children in 1626–7, into a vehicle for the creative imagination: notably under the hands of Holberg’s friend C. A. Thielo, and his successors for whom the Hamburg Bach, clavichordist as well as symphonist, was a beacon light. Sönnichsen almost became his pupil, and Zinck succeeded in being one. Mozart’s widow Constanze, married to the diplomat Georg Nissen, wrote from Copenhagen in 1810 that with the arrival of her Stein pianoforte ordered from Vienna inevitably delayed till next year, she would just have to make do with her clavichord; and one last example was being sought in a newspaper small-ad as late as 1842. Zinck followed C. P. E. Bach’s example in his six carefully planned yet visionary sonatas of 1783, allowing one of them to end, unexpectedly, in a song-setting. In Christopher’s estimation, German and native clavichordists played a major part in the creation of Copenhagen’s vibrant musical scene around 1780, and their work is sufficiently interesting in a European context to merit further investigation.

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