Scarlatti Domenico (1685-1757)
Harpsichord Sonatas, 1742 (part III)
In the courts where Domenico Scarlatti stayed on his way to Madrid, there were not only harpsichords, but also a recently invented keyboard instrument call the “cimbalo di piano e forte detto volgarmente di martelletti” (piano and forte harpsichord, commonly called ‘a harpsichord with hammers’), which I have used in this recording, and called the fortepiano as is customary nowadays. Sometime between 1702 and 1703 Domenico and his father were appointed to the Court of Ferdinando de’ Medici in Florence where, at least two years before, the outstandingly skilled Cristofori had invented and built this new instrument with hammers, which could, in contrast to the harpsichord, vary the dynamic loudness of sounds. Scarlatti must have seen the fortepiano where it originated in the first years of its use.