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A recent study and restoration of a pianoforte initially attributed to Nannette Streicher reveals that it is in fact an instrument built by the firm Geschwister Stein in 1802.
The instrument appears to be the first known piano by the Geschwister Stein with a keyboard range of five-and-a-half octaves. The turn of the eighteenth century was a period of great transition in the development of the pianoforte and the Stein-Streicher family played a key role in Vienna’s musical scene. By reviewing some early aspects of the longstanding and complex relationship Nannette Stein and her husband Andreas Streicher, as well as Matthaüs Andreas Stein maintained with Ludwig van Beethoven, we may shed some light on the instrument Beethoven used in the period leading up to his public performance in April 1803, at the Theater an der Wien.
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by Birgitta Arts
Beethoven had access to a pianoforte with a keyboard compass of FF-c’’’’ in 1802.
The relationship between the Stein-Streicher family and the composer Ludwig van Beethoven in the early years in Vienna (1796-1803).