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TONY CHINNERY HARPSICHORDS

Grimaldi harpsichord

Grimaldi harpsichord

This single manual instrument is a copy of the harpsichord by Carlo Grimaldi from Messina in Sicily. It is dated 1697. The original has a range of 4 octaves, from GG-c''', but I normaly extend the range by one tone to GG-d'', plus the transposing keyboard for 415/440. It has two 8' registers. The keyboard naturals are in bone, with ebony topped accidentals. Optional is the keyboard with boxwood naturals.
This instrument has a poweful rich sound, with a beautiful strong bass, perfect for basso continuo as well as the Italian solo repertory.

Listen to the Grimaldi harpsichord:
registers: 8'+8'

The Grimaldi is a light cased instrument made in cypress, put in a seperate outer case. These outer cases could be decorated to suit taste. Very often, as in this example, the inside of the lid was painted with a mythological landscape. Grimaldi harpsichord
Grimaldi harpsichord

This is the original 1697 Grimaldi. The outer case is covered in gold leaf with a pattern in black paint. It has this incredible carved and gilt stand. I have made several copies with the original case decoration, though nobody has yet asked me for the original stand! The gold is applied with the traditional and very ancient technique of water gilding (the same as the ancient Egyptians used)

See the Grimaldi copy I made for the Cleveland Art Museum

 


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