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Special Issue on the Toy Piano

Deadline: 31 January 2019

While toy instruments have been included in classical music since the early 1770s, it is the toy piano which has made a major move onto the stage in the second half of the twentieth century, thanks to John Cage. In doing so, the toy piano has taken on a life independent of the nursery, with dedicated performers in several countries commissioning new works, and composers increasingly being drawn to write for the instrument. The sound qualities of the toy piano have unique acoustical properties, with the narrow range of the keyboard offering a restricted yet entirely adequate palette of sounds. For performers, the physicality of seating an adult at the small instrument poses challenges. An understanding of the toy piano’s history raises the question of why this toy instrument was never drawn into adult compositions before the twentieth century, despite having existed for a long time. The Contemporary Music Review seeks papers on these topics and more, for an issue focused on the toy piano.

Submission Instructions

Abstracts of 300 words or less should be sent to D.Blom@westernsydney.edu.au by 31 January 2019. Authors will be notified by 30 March 2019 if they are selected to submit a full paper. Full papers will be due 30 September 2019.

Contemporary Music Review

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Editorial information

Guest Editors:

  • Diana Blom, Australia
  • Sara Cavalho, Portugal
  • Antonietta Loffredo, Italy
  • Stefano Lamon, Italy