Author Topic: Chatting with Dr Alastair Laurence of Broadwood Pianos - Victorian pitch  (Read 1495 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

David Pinnegar

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 1656
  • Karma: +66/-3
    • View Profile
I had the good fortune a few weeks ago to meet up with Dr Laurence of Broadwood Pianos, the firm still making pianos by hand in England, and with archives extant going back to the beginnings of the firm.

We talked pitch and other things. If I remember correctly he told me that a Victorian tuner's bag that he had had three tuning forks  . . . for . . .
450
440 and
430

This makes rather a mess of the rather neat theories that people have, that A was once 432 "tuned to the vibrations of the earth" and that it went up and up.

He mentioned 444 as being an orchestral pitch in the 19th century - so people now having their instruments tuned at 444 are not being avant garde at all . . .

Certainly a set of pitch pipes that I have are much sharper than 440 . . .

Best wishes

David P
David Pinnegar, BSc ARCS

David Pinnegar

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 1656
  • Karma: +66/-3
    • View Profile
I've just been listening to the recording I made at the time and Dr Laurence is illuminating.
450 was "concert" pitch
444 was "medium" pitch
whilst "old philharmonic" or "vocal" was 430

Best wishes

David P
David Pinnegar, BSc ARCS

 


Locations of visitors to this page

Organ Design


Latroba Holidays