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showroom at the time of the visit. All models are available in polished ebony as well as a range of finishes and colours to suit different tastes and interiors.

Before we start, it is worth stating that I’d happily have any of these pianos at home. The Yamaha CLP-735 Clavinova (£2,008) offers ‘smooth key release’ and does indeed feel realistic. The Mozart and Chopin fortepianos were definably different (Mozart lighter than Chopin). Moving between ‘grands’, one could feel the extra warmth of the Bösendorfer over the Yamaha CFX, though I personally found it difficult to get a true singing line in the Chopin Nocturne Op 27/2 on the Bösendorfer. As always, lots of fun to be had for a short amount of time with the effects: the Jazz Organ is very Nicholas Parsons’ Sale of the Century ( for those readers old enough, like myself, to remember it). Two dedicated buttons make it easy to return to the baseline setting of the CFX and Bösendorfer if you find yourself lost in the maze of options available. Similarly, specific buttons enable entry to ‘Piano Room’ where one can choose how far the lid is raised, alter your instrument’s brightness and change venue and ambience. Touch and tuning can be adjusted too. The Clavinova CLP-745 (£2,688) offers 38 voices over two-way speakers and an enhanced GrandTouch-S wooden keyboard. Despite its higher price, the Bösendorfer setting

‘All models include Yamaha’s GrandTouch action, replicating the feel of a real grand piano’

emerged as less convincing than the CLP-735 and curiously I felt there was less difference between the Mozart and Chopin fortepianos here. The CLP-775 (£3,586), offering 38 voices and three-way speakers, including two fortepianos, is far more responsive, both in grand piano mode and, notably, in Harpsichord 8’ setting. The opening of Bach’s Italian Concerto fizzed nicely on the harpsichord and felt genuinely exciting, while the A-flat Fugue from Book I of the Well-Tempered Clavier, with its slower unfolding, revealed a believable post-keystrike decay.

Finally, the grand piano style CLP-765GP Clavinova, at £4,872. The intent here is to allow truly infinite variety of touch in a believable sound through improved Virtual Resonance Modeling. I’m happy to report the keys are significantly more responsive and feel better weighted. The bass on the CFX is notably fine. Bells and whistles aside (it includes 38 voices), the question is which model feels most like an acoustic piano, and this is the one. It is a joy to play. IP


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Musical Reflections on the Slavonic Soul

Musical Reflections on the

Sl Nelly at the sele Ma cycle Med brea while Slavo la y e e az e dt at s on

Slavonic Reflections, recorded by Nelly Akopian-Tamarina in recital at the Wigmore Hall, is a highly personal selection of piano music containing Mazurkas by Chopin and Janáček’s cycle In the Mists, as well as encores by Medtner and Liadov. The programme breathes a melancholic air of sadness, while simultaneously showing an equally Slavonic passion for dance and nature.


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International Piano Guide to Instruments & Accessories 81

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