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See Trazegnies family

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Jaak Liivoja-Lorius

(fl Milan, c1737–63). Italian violin maker. His violins are roughly reminiscent of Giovanni Grancino’s model although without its symmetry. The craftsmanship rarely approaches any degree of refinement, though the tonal qualities invariably rise above these limitations, and authentic examples in good condition command respectable prices. The varnish on the better instruments is a reddish-brown, most of the others being a clear yellow-brown. Alberti took over Grancino’s shop, which is acknowledged on his printed labels: ‘Ferdinando Alberti in Contrada/Larga di Milano a Segno della/Corona F. l’Anno 17 –’ or ‘Ferdinando Alberti fece in Milano/nella Contrada del pesce al Segno/della Corona l’Anno 17–’. (R. Vannes: ...

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Renato Meucci

( fl Milan, 1709–41). Italian woodwind instrument maker . His full name is known to us only from the mark on a double bassoon. His other surviving instruments, which are often made of ivory, include recorders and double recorders, oboes, a bass flute and, possibly, a flute. A search of the Milan archives has failed to reveal anyone by the name of Anciuti living in the city during the 18th century. However, it is possible that this maker was using a pseudonym: an appropriate one for a maker of reed (It.: ...

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See Trazegnies family

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Philip J. Kass

(b Füssen, Bavaria, May 10, 1712; d Naples, Feb 5, 1763). German violin maker. He moved to Naples early in his career. His violins closely resemble those of the Gagliano family, particularly Nicola, suggesting that he learnt his craft in that workshop. The relative scarcity of his work (only violins are known) is probably due to his short lifespan. His instruments are usually on the small side, in conformity with the Gaglianos’. His varnish is typically Neapolitan and ranges from deep red-orange to gold. He appears to have used the same printed label throughout his career, with his initials contained in a circle following the date. There is also at least one example branded on the button with the letters ‘G B N’ (his initials and city) enclosed in a shield....

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Charles Beare

(b ?Salisbury, July 14, 1727; d Salisbury, Feb 18, 1795). English violin maker and instrument dealer. He lived and worked in Salisbury and, with Forster, did much to raise the standard of English violin making in the second half of the 18th century. Banks possibly learnt his craft from a relative or in London, perhaps with Wamsley. His woodwork, using native sycamore for backs and sides and pine for tops, looks like that of Duke and Joseph Hill, but he had even more in common with William Forster (i), since both used a thick, dark red oil-varnish, previously unknown in England. Banks might have worked in London on his own for a time, but most of his instruments are labelled from Salisbury. Banks is, like Forster, particularly famous for the many cellos he made. His violas were of the small size fashionable at the time and are less appreciated now, but his violins, though rare, are very good instruments tonally and sometimes pass for Italian. Of the cellos, most are built on a reduced Amati pattern and are very similar to the work of the Forsters, both in appearance and tone. Occasionally, however, Banks made a cello with features of Stradivari, and these are excellent in every way. Bows were sometimes branded by him, though they were doubtless made for him, and he was careful to brand his instruments, sometimes in many places. Some of the later instruments were made for and branded by the London firm of Longman & Broderip, who also employed lesser makers....

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(fl Paris, c1716–42). French string instrument maker. He was particularly well known as a maker of viols and his instruments are highly valued as examples of French craftsmanship. The viol virtuoso Marin Marais is known to have owned an instrument by him. A lengthy description of his talent and skill survives in the correspondence of Jean-Baptiste Forqueray (...

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Jeannie Campbell

(bap. Edinburgh, Scotland, Dec 5, 1680; d Edinburgh, Sept 1753). Highland Scottish turner, evidently a bagpipe maker. In 1712 he made billiard balls for the officer in charge of Edinburgh Castle. On all the birth records of children born to Barclay and his wife Elizabeth Arbuthnet in Edinburgh parish, ...

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Anne Beetem Acker

(bap. London, England, Jan 1, 1685; d London, England, by 1735). English spinet and harpsichord maker. His father, also Thomas, was a butcher. He was apprenticed to Stephen Keene from 1 Aug 1699 for seven years and his initials (TB) appear in a Keene spinet of ...

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Neal Zaslaw

(b late 17th century; d Versailles, ?1728). French luthier and player on the musette and hurdy-gurdy. As early as 1672 Borjon de Scellery remarked upon the popularity of the musette among the French noblemen and the hurdy-gurdy among noble ladies. Bâton l'aîné took advantage of the continuing fashion for rustic instruments, and worked at transforming the musette and hurdy-gurdy from folk instruments into art ones. His younger contemporary Terrasson wrote:...

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G. Kaleschke

(b Germany, 1714; d Germany, 1794). German organ builder. Initially a carpenter, he began work as an organ builder about 1749 and was probably apprenticed to the Stumm brothers in Rhaunen-Sulzbach. His work was restricted to the Zweibrücken area, where he was respected as a capable organ builder and surveyor. His 12 or so surviving single-manual organs have colourful specifications with characteristic stops (Streicherstimmen, Cornett, Trompete Diskant); the most important is at Bad Bergzabern (formerly in the Schlosskirche). Of his children, only Konrad Isaac (...

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Heike Fricke

(bc1708; d Vienna, Austria, July 17, 1775). Austrian woodwind maker. Variant spellings such as R. Paur, Rockobauer, Rockopauer, Ruckebauer, and Rochebaur presumably refer to the same person. In the parish books of St Michael’s Church in Vienna he is listed as a civic wind player (...

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Kenneth Sparr

(b Askersund, Sweden, 1717; d Stockholm, Sweden, 1763). Swedish luthier, active in Stockholm from 1736. He made bowed and plucked instruments and was inspired by Guersan and the old Parisian school, as was his apprentice Johan Öberg. Some of his instruments are stamped ‘S. BECKMAN’ and numbered. In ...

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Mary Cyr

(fl Paris, c1687; d cNov 10, 1725). French string instrument maker. He was one of the best and most prolific of French makers of string instruments and his viols are fine examples of 18th-century craftsmanship. He held the title faiseur d'instrumens ordinaire de la muzique du Roy...

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Laurence Libin

(bc1730; d London, UK, Jan 2, 1804). English piano maker, possibly of German origin. During the 1750s he worked as an organ builder in St Pancras parish, London; he married in Soho in 1760. His workshop, established in 1768 on Compton Street, Soho (very near the premises of Frederick Neubauer, who advertised pianos for sale in ...

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Tula Giannini

(fl Paris, 1716–c1758). French maker of woodwind instruments. He was admitted into the Communautés d’arts et métier de la ville et fauxbourgs de Paris (Paris community of master makers) in 1716 for which he served as juré compatible (‘expert responsible’). In ...

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Philip J. Kass

(bc1707; d Paris, France, 1756). French luthier. He was born in a small town in the Champagne region. In 1725, assisted by his cousin, the composer Michel Pignolet de Montéclair, he bought the workshop of Nicolas Bertrand. He ran a successful business under the sign ‘à la guitare royale’, catering to clients for all sorts of instruments, but his speciality remained violins. He was master of the Violin Makers’ Guild in ...

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Friedrich Jakob

(fl c1720–67). Swiss organ builder. His family came from Weingarten, near Lommis, in the canton of Thurgau. Together with Speisegger he was one of the most important organ builders in eastern Switzerland in the first half of the 18th century. The only certain biographical date is that of his marriage on ...

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Charles Beare and Sylvette Milliot

(b c1680; d May 19, 1730). French violin maker. He ranks with Claude Pierray as the most important of the early Paris luthiers. His shop was in the rue d’Argenteuil from 1712 to 1725, and then in the rue de la Juiverie, near Notre Dame, until his death. He was half-brother to Louis Guersan. Like Pierray, he worked on an adaptation of the Amati model. His wood was usually that available locally; the fronts are not ideal tonally, but in the 18th century, as now, his instruments were in good repute among players. The varnish is Italian in appearance, if rather more brittle in consistency, and as a result his work is quite often seen with more illustrious names attached. In particular this is true of his cellos, which are fine instruments tonally....

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Gerhard Grenzing and Andrés Cea Galán

(b Palma de Mallorca, Spain, Nov 8, 1739; d Madrid, Spain, Dec 2, 1800). Iberian organ builder. His father, Mateu Bosch, built the organ in the Convent de Sant Geròni, Palma de Mallorca (1746). Following Mateu’s death, Bosch became an apprentice to Leonardo Fernández Dávila in Granada. Bosch’s first independent work, in Binissalem (...