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Elgar and the gramophone

For 20 years Edward Elgar worked for The Gramophone Company as both an advocate of his music and an advocate of the gramophone. During this period, recording technology changed from the cramped conditions of the acoustic studio of 1914 (above) … Continue reading

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Filed under Romantic era

The Hindenburg piano

The first piano ever to be carried on a passenger aircraft was created by the Julius Blüthner Pianofortefabrik for the ill-fated Hindenburg airship. The lightweight aluminum alloy grand piano weighed only 162 kg (356 lbs). The frame, rim, fallboard, and … Continue reading


Filed under Curiosities, Instruments

Sophy and Mendelssohn

In 1833 Sophy Horsley, a well-heeled British teenager, wrote to her aunt “Mendelssohn took my album with him the night of our glee-party, but you have no idea how many names he has got me.” Over the following years Horsley … Continue reading

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Filed under Curiosities, Romantic era, Visual art

Hans Christian Andersen, music critic

As many people know, Hans Christian Andersen, whose children’s stories have proven to be his most widespread source of fame, was the most prominent Danish author of the nineteenth century. As fewer people know, he enjoyed a brief career as … Continue reading

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Filed under Literature, Reception, Romantic era