His older brother Pietro Filippo was also a musician. Scarlatti first studied music under his father. Soon afterward, his father sent him to Venice. It was in Rome that he met Thomas Roseingrave.
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Is it not possible that he wrote some sonatas for that instrument. What keyboard instruments were the sonatas originally written for? And perhaps, to which instruments are they ideally suited? Did Scarlatti owned a keyboard instrument or several like J. Bach , or he simply played on what his Royal patrons made available to him? It is not known. When Scarlatti died, seven inventories regarding his state were made.
Unfortunately five of those are lost. On the two surviving ones no mention is made of any instrument of any kind. If the missing inventories are ever recovered, then we may find out more. His second favourite instrument was a harpsichord made in Spain presented to him by the Queen of Spain so we may well speculate that Scarlatti may have owned an instrument as well, since if the Queen was to favour Farinelli, why not her personal keyboard teacher?
According to her testament these were: 12 Keyboard instruments: 7 harpsichords of different makers and 5 pianofortes made in Florence either by Cristofori or by his disciple Ferrini.
Interestingly, 2 of these pianos had been turned back into harpsichords. The harpsichords varied in range of notes: the one with the smallest range had keys, and the largest range was on a Spanish harpsichord with 61 keys. The pianos ranged from 49 to 56 keys four octaves and a half. In fact, the only instruments where these particular sonatas could have been played were in the three Spanish harpsichords with 61 keys in the palaces of Buen Retiro, Aranjuez and Escorial.
All of the above is not to say that Scarlatti should not be played on the piano the modern piano is a very different animal from a Cristofori piano. In fact I myself much prefer the sound of Scarlatti on the piano than on the harpsichord. Best wishes, Bernhard.
Logged The music business is a cruel and shallow money trench, a long plastic hallway where thieves and pimps run free, and good men die like dogs. Hunter Thompson.
Keyboard Sonata in A major, K.209 (Scarlatti, Domenico)