We are located in the one of the most historic houses in London: Clementi House.
Starting from 1752, in this house used to live and work, world known composers and musicians. During the second and third decades of the 19th century, Clementi House was the London home of Muzio Clementi (1752-1832), composer, pianist, and ‘Father of the Pianoforte’ in the words of the composer’s plaque in Westminster Abbey (where he is buried).
One of the forte-pianos manufactured by Clementi’s company at that period is in the front hall of Clementi House and tuned to a playable (if not performable) condition, with its original strings.
Through Clementi’s presence, the house became the musical ‘home’ in London of the young Felix Mendelssohn (1809-47), who visited the house daily during his prolonged London visits 1830-33.
It was then the home of composer William Horsley (1774-1858) and his musical family, with whom Mendelssohn performed home-made operas in the drawing-room. Mendelssohn was present at the betrothal in the house of Horsley’s daughter Mary to Isambard Kingdom Brunel, for which couple the composer dashed off a song. Its unpublished manuscript remains in the house till this day.
Brunel is commemorated in the house with a copy of his portrait by Mary’s brother John Horsley RA, who is himself represented by original oil paintings and his wife’s engraved signature on a window pane. Clementi House opened to the public formally in 2014 for the cultural and musical tourist as a shrine to Muzio Clementi, known to countless pianists throughout the world as the composer of the pianistic manual, Gradus Ad Parnassum, used to this day by aspiring pianists in their fourth and fifth years.
A selection of Clementi’s works were performed by pianist Peter Roper-Curzon at the opening public recital in the house on December 10th, 2014, with soprano Caroline Johnson performing songs by Mendelssohn. Clementi House was visited by many other outstanding musicians of the period, including Chopin, Bellini, Joachim, and Ignaz Moscheles.
Clementi House is owned by the Clementi House Trust (established 1983) with its care and custodianship entrusted to the resident Stacey family. Now 128 Kensington Church Street, the house was built in 1737 as No. 1 High Row, Church Lane, and comprises some 25 rooms including spacious music/drawing room, dining room, parlour, library, master bedroom and several others, all with traditional furnishing and décor, gallery, studio, kitchens, two staircases, roof garden, private ground-level garden.
Our Address: 128 Kensington Church street, W84BH, London