Hand-Built Harpsichords

Norman Sheppard builds harpsichords and fortepianos based on historical drawings from the 16-19th centuries.  His instruments are featured in the recordings and performances of the Madison Bach Musicians and Trevor Stephenson.  

To inquire about available instruments, or to order one, contact Norman at sheppardnorman@yahoo.com or (608)829-0944.  


1660 Italian Harpsichord (built in 1997)

At only forty pounds, this instrument has remarkable clarity and precise intonation necessary for music of the Italian renaissance and early baroque period. It is ideal for chamber performances and is light enough to transport easily.

Italianharp



1679 Flemish Harpsichord (built in 1999)  

The harpsichord of J. S. Bach's youth. This four-octave instrument, modeled after the 1679 Couchet in the Smithsonian, provides the compass and timbre for Bach's mid-life masterpiece, The Well-Tempered Clavier, Book I.

CIMG2379



1780 Fortepiano (built in 2003)  

The concert keyboard instrument of the high classical style. Its brilliance and articulation provide essential theatrical immediacy for the music of Mozart, Haydn, and Beethoven.

Fortepiano



1772 German double-manual harpsichord (built in 2011)

This large instrument is similar to the instrument purchased by J. S. Bach in Berlin in 1720.  The size, weight, of this harpsichord produce a variety of timbres that make it perfect for playing Bach’s Brandenberg Concertos, and the music of Alessandro Scarlotti or George Fredrick Handel.   



1719 German single-manual Harpsichord (built in 2007)

This single-manual harpsichord is ideal for playing  any music by Bach.  It is strung entirely with brass wire, which gives it a lyrical, Italian flavor.  It has a brightness and clarity for solo performance, and enough volume and presence to be ideal for a chamber orchestra.

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