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date: 15 November 2019

Brodmann, Joseph Johann locked

  • Howard Schott
  • , revised by Michael Latcham


(b Eichswald, Prussia [now Germany], c1771; d Vienna, Austria, May 13, 1848). Austrian piano maker. He was probably in Vienna by the 1780s, and obtained citizenship in 1796. In 1812 he became vice-chairman of the 40-member piano makers’ association, and was chairman by 1814. He produced and improved the Querpianoforte, a piano in the shape of a bentside spinet. In 1825 he was granted a privilege (dissolved in 1832) for a three-ply soundboard, the grain of the middle layer running transversely.

Features of the two earliest known grands by Brodmann (no date, private ownership in Vienna; 1800/02, D.HA.h), and the earliest known square (A.W.t) strongly suggest that Brodmann was a journeyman with Ferdinand Hofmann. The action of the square has Hofmann’s escapement jacks and his curious back checks mounted on the keys. Other features (the shape of the bentside, the wide D keys, the action parts and string distribution) in some later instruments show the influence of Anton Walter. In ...

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