LSM Newswire

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Recording News from Divine Art: 200 Years of Early French keyboard music

Terence Charlston explores sixteenth- and seventeenth-century French keyboard music through the touch and sound of the clavichord in his new recording for Divine Art Records (dda 25134). Despite modern players and makers attaching little importance to the role of the clavichord in the development of French keyboard music, the instrument was highly valued within late-renaissance culture and continued to be used by musicians into the seventeenth century and later. The album contains one piece (the well known Toccata in C by Sweelinck) which was not written in France but was popular there.  

Charlston recorded this historic program of keyboard works on a reconstruction of the clavichord described in Marin Mersenne’s Harmonie Universelle. Peter Bavington built the clavichord, using Mersenne’s text and accompanying engraving as a guide. Bavington studied early keyboard instrument making and restoration at the London College of Furniture (now London Metropolitan University) and later earned his Higher National Diploma in Musical Instrument Technology. His customers have included the Royal Academy of Music, the Guildhall School of Music and Drama and the Hochschule der Künste Berlin.

Born in Blackpool, Lancashire, Terence Charlston enjoys a varied career as a soloist, chamber musician, director, teacher and academic researcher. He can be heard on nearly 100 commercial CDs playing all manner of historical keyboards including virginal, clavichord and fortepiano. He was a member of London Baroque from 1995 until 2007 and is a core member of the ensemble Florilegium. He has recently recorded with the Magdalena Consort and is a member of The Society of Strange and Ancient Instruments. He was a Patron and Guest Director of the Lancashire Sinfonietta from 2009 until 2015.

An authority on English and continental Baroque keyboard music, he has been responsible for many pioneering concerts, recordings and editions. As a respected advocate of early keyboard instruments within the educational sphere, he has taught harpsichord and basso continuo at the Royal Academy of Music in London since 1989 and founded its Department of Historical Performance in 1995. He joined the staff of the Royal College of Music, London as professor of harpsichord in 2007, and in 2009 he was appointed Visiting Fellow in Harpsichord at the Royal Northern College of Music in Manchester, where he is now International Visiting Tutor in Harpsichord.

The recording will be released this November.

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