Document Type

Capstone Project (Open Access)

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts (B.A.)


Music & Performing Arts

First Advisor

Lanier Sammons


This paper explores keyboard technology in music from the Baroque era to today. Central focus is on the initial dominance of the harpsichord in Western music and how this shifted to the piano. Using this context of evolving instrumentation, the paper considers how this coincided with changing styles of music composition. Finally, the paper considers the question of how a keyboardist of today should handle music written in eras before the piano existed, and whether it is appropriate to perform harpsichord music using a modern piano.