Biblioteca de la Guitarra y Cuerda Pulsada

Biblioteca de la Guitarra y Cuerda Pulsada

Domenico Scarlatti A contribution to our understanding of his sonatas through performance and research

 

This dissertation started from the point of view of a harpsichordist wondering whether the piano played any part in Scarlatti’s music. I was also interested in looking at the organ as, strangely, scholars had seemed uninterested in it despite the twenty-eight years spanning Scarlatti’s employment as a churchmusician. The discovery of the octave displacements in the 1742 Venice manuscript was an unexpected find that led to a new investigation. And the study of temperament, which commenced with an investigation into what sonatas could be played on instruments tuned to various forms of meantone temperament, blossomed in unexpected ways as I experienced parallels to the rhetorical intent of the music. Over the last six years changes of emphasis and direction occurred not only within my work but also in the outside world. Perhaps this was due to a shared deadline of the forthcoming 2007 Scarlatti anniversary. Research and recording activity has increased in response to the work of historical piano builders Kerstin Schwarz, David Sutherland and Denzil Wraight. Without any knowledge of the abilities of the early piano, research in this area was all but stranded. Their work has shown us that the Cristofori piano can do justice to the music of Scarlatti in a way that was previously unimaginable, particularly in the light of Kirkpatrick’s assessment of the abilities of Cristofori’s...

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