Chopin's pianos

Chopin's Swansong - a book by Alex Cobbe

Chopin's Swansong - book cover

Published by The Chopin Society UK, in association with the Cobbe Collection Trust, 2010.

This richly illustrated book recounts the story of three pianos Chopin lived with and used in his concerts in 1848. On two of them, in an exceptional burst of musical activity, he endowed English audiences with the final performances of his life - his swansong. The third belonged to his close friend and pupil Jane Stirling who organised his visit to Britain and whom, at this time, he was seeing almost every day. It relates the circumstances of why all three pianos - made by the three top manufacturers of the time, Pleyel, Broadwood and Erard - are now to be found in a Robert Adam-designed house in the Surrey countryside.

The book discusses Chopin's relationship and opinions concerning Jane Stirling and the three piano makers. It contains new discoveries resulting from fresh examination of the primary sources, and was published to celebrate the bicentenary of Chopin's birth.

62pp, 23.5cm x 30cm hardback, available by mail order at these special prices per copy (inclusive of p&p):
United Kingdom24.50
Rest of the World32.00

To order copies, download the order form, print it out and send it with a sterling cheque made payable to 'The Chopin Society UK' to this address:

The Chopin Society (Book offer)
44 Bassett Road
London W10 6JL

Please allow 3 weeks for delivery

Below are some illustrations from the book:

a photograph of Chopin's Pleyel piano, from the book, 'Chopin's Swansong' an illustration from the book, 'Chopin's Swansong' part of a drawing of the Pleyel's action, from the book, 'Chopin's Swansong'

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