Inside the Hearing Machine

Inside the Hearing Machine

News September 22, 2017

Beethoven on his Broadwood

A new CD and documentary by pianist and artistic researcher Tom Beghin

Piano Sonatas Opus 109, 110 and 111

A new CD and documentary by pianist and artistic researcher Tom Beghin
In collaboration with: keyboard maker Chris Maene, acoustician Thomas Wulfrank, music historian Robin Wallace, Tonmeister Martha de Francisco and sound engineer Steven Maes


“You do hear better when you bring your head under this machine, don’t you?”
André Stein to Beethoven in June 1824

In 1818 Beethoven received a Broadwood piano: he remained attached to it until the end of his life. But those years coincided with his increased deafness. In 1820, a solution came in the form of a gigantic Gehörmaschine, commissioned from the piano builder André Stein, who in turn enlisted the skills of a local tinsmith.

Tom Beghin surrounded himself with a team of specialists to reconstruct Beethoven’s private multi-sensory laboratory. Through a 52-minute film-documentary, the team explains how Beethoven “deafly composed” at his English piano - hearing, seeing, but mostly feeling the vibrations of his beloved instrument.


Tom Beghin profite de cet univers sonore inouï, qui le pousse vers des régions inusitées dans les dernières sonates de Beethoven
(Diapason, Dec. 2017)