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- Jamie Cullum Visits The Parsonage!

Radio 4 and Jazz Pianist Jamie Cullum at the Parsonage
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Jazz Pianist Jamie Cullem Visits The Parsonage

18th September 2013

This week we had a very special guest here at the Parsonage, BBC Radio 4 and jazz pianist Jamie Cullum. Jamie is currently travelling the country for his new radio programme Jamie’s Piano Pilgrimage, which will be about the history of piano playing. Jamie swung by to find out about the Brontës’ love of music and the importance of the piano in the lives of Victorian women.

The Brontë Piano is a 'priviledge' to play

The Brontë piano was thought to have been originally bought on the request of Branwell Brontë by his father Patrick, but it was Anne and especially Emily who loved to play it.
Jamie followed happily in their fingertips and played some beautiful tunes. He was carefully prepped and watched over by piano conservator Ken Forrest, who had tuned the piano for the event. Bronte Society Executive Director Professor Ann Sumner and Collections Manager Ann Dinsdale were also present during the recording to offer lots of information about the Brontës and their love of music. Ann Sumner even presented Jamie with a beautiful copy of Wuthering Heights and one of the lovely T-shirts that are available from our museum shop.

Jamie seemed to very much enjoy his time at the Parsonage and said that the piano was ‘one of the most extraordinary pianos’ he had ever played or seen. He spoke very highly about the instrument saying it has a ‘very unique touch’ and that it was ‘incredibly pure’ with an ‘amazing clarity to the notes’. He also expressed that he felt ‘privileged to sit at and play’ the same piano the sisters had played.

The Brontë Parsonage will feature in two episodes of Jamie’s Piano Pilgrimage. The programme will reach over one million listeners every Saturday in January 2014 at 10:30am on Radio 4.

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