instrument

About my fortepiano

a fortepiano built in 1802 by Frere et Soeur Stein in Vienna 
 

Frere et Soeur Stein was a piano company founded in 1794 by the siblings Nanette and Matthäus Andreas Stein.  They were the daughter and son of Johann Andreas Stein, whose pianos Mozart was so enthusiastic about, and they strictly followed the tradition of their father’s technique. Frere et Soeur Stein continued until 1802, when Matthäus Andreas broke away to go into business for himself and the philosophy for building pianos began to change towards creating more volume.  This piano is one of the last pianos they built together and reflects the pinnacle of design from that time: a perfect balance of mechanism and proportions resulting in an exquisite tone colour throughout the registers.

Nanette continued to build pianos under her name Nanette Streicher (through her marriage to Johan Andreas Streicher). She had a very good friendship with Beethoven and her pianos contributed to his music making enormously throughout his life.  After Nanette’s death, her son Johan Baptist inherited the company and
became one of the builders whose pianos ushered in the golden age of the piano, being vastly popular among many pianists, including Weber, Liszt, Mendelssohn, Clara Schumann and Brahms.

Through the passing down of the building tradition through the Stein, Frere et Soeur Stein and Streicher pianos, the elements of the design of my piano became the prototypes which led to the pianos that had a great influence on the history of music.

After having been unplayable for many years in disrepair, it was restored by Sietse Kok for Keiko Shichijo and has been played in public since 2011.

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