Dr. Neve's Piano Students Performing on SFSU's 1808 Clementi Fortepiano
This forte piano was donated to the Frank V. de Bellis Collection by Serena de Bellis in her husband's memory on April 11, 1969. It has Backers’ action characteristic of instruments manufactured between 1777 and 1815. The harpsichord-shaped frame is constructed of oak and mahogany, the small hammers are covered with leather, and the strings are thin, unwound, and of low tension. There are three strings to each note. A left-foot pedal can shift the entire keyboard so that one may also play with two strings or one, causing not only a change in the dynamics but also a distinct change to tonal quality. The keyboard has 68 keys (contra F to C’’’’). The instrument has a gentle sound – transparent and capable of subtle nuance.
[Info and Photo from Frank V. de Bellis Collection: Muzio Clementi Archive]