Well Tempered Tuning / Romantic Composers

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My piano tuner recently offered to tune my instrument (Yamaha baby grand) to Thomas Young's 1799 Well-Tempered tuning. I understand that Bach and classical composers such as Beethoven wrote music on well-tempered instruments. I have been working on some Brahms pieces and wonder if he and other romantic composers also composed using well-tempered tunings. I'm curious if playing the Brahms I've been practicing with equal-tempered tuning will, with a well-tempered tuning, be more or less true to his compositional intent. Will pieces in more distant keys turn ugly or show their true character?

-- Tom Millott (tmillott@hermanrecor.com), August 08, 2001

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