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Graham WalkerThis is the website of Graham Walker, Dorset, UK who has had an interest in the early piano for over 30 years. He has undertaken the restoration of instruments for private collection and has also carried out research on early pianos and their makers over this period. This has been done alongside a career in management consultancy and performance management. Early retirement in 2007 enabled him to become more involved and he commissioned a cloth manufacturer to produce an authentic keyboard cloth. This cloth is the nearest match to an early 19th century piano cloth that can be made within modern manufacturing processes. It was initially produced for his requirements but it soon came in demand by others.  Further types of cloth have been replicated by request from makers and restorers.  These cloths can be purchased from the online shop on this website.  He has also undertaken some research into the leather used in early English pianos and is currently working in liaison with the Institute of Creative Leather Technology, Northampton University, UK with the objective of determining specifications. He is involved in supporting interest in the early piano and is passionate about ensuring that our heritage of early pianos collections in the UK can be maintained for the future.

Carolina Music Museum

Carolina Music Museum

In the rather disappointing outlook for early keyboard instrument museums in the UK it is good to know that in the United States there will be a new museum. The Carolina Music Museum, Grenville, South Carolina will be opened in March 2018 with a wide range of exhibits.  It will include a rich presence of American and English instruments that will be presented in an interesting and accessible way.

Transforming the space for the Carolina Museum Museum to accommodate the exhibits is being undertaken now and Tom Strange the curator of the collection has organised the work necessary to bring the instruments up to exhibition standard. Among these include an American square piano by Robert and William Nunns (1828), a Longman and Broderip grand piano (1795), and a Broadwood upright grand (1805).  It is expected that there will be about 35 to 40 instruments.

In contrast in the UK, we have seen the close of Finchcocks Musical Museum in Kent, England in December 2015 and the close of the Colt Clavier Collection also in Kent.  Even the V&A have withdrawn their musical instruments from exhibition.

We wish all success to the South Carolina Museum.

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