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The Team

Simon Howe

Simon is the founding partner of Cambridge Pianoforte. He started life as a piano tuner in 1975 on a moped around Cambridge.

Simon is one of life’s wonderful characters, who has worked tirelessly to promote and support music within the Cambridge Region. For many years he was on the road tuning pianos in around the Cambridge colleges and concert halls. Based in the shop now, he has a wealth of experience to help guide through the variety of decisions to be made with dealing with pianos.


Iain Kilpatrick

Iain is a partner in Cambridge Pianoforte, and has more than 25 years’ experience of tuning and technical work. He has been responsible for the preparation and tuning of the instruments in all the main concert venues in Cambridge.

These include the Cambridge Corn Exchange, West Road Concert Hall in the University of Cambridge, the Cambridge Arts Theatre, and the majority of the colleges of the University of Cambridge including King’s, Trinity and St John’s.

He has tuned for many international artists, including Murray Periaha, Mitsuku Uchida, Stephen Kovacevich, Angela Hewitt, Imogen Cooper, Martin Roscoe and many more. He has also provided technical support for a number of sound recordings, including most recently for Barry Douglas.

Iain trained at Newark & Sherwood College in the 1980s (the only college in the UK currently training piano tuners), where he was also the external examiner from 2000-2010. He is a former winner of the Blüthner Tuning Cup and was the David Mark’s Tuning Cup winner in 1991 (a national tuning competition for piano tuners). Iain is a member of the Pianoforte Tuners’ Association.


Marcel Kunkel

Marcel is our lead piano technician. He originally trained at Newark & Sherwood college, but later also received training at the Steinway & Sons factory in Hamburg.

Marcel is one of those rare people who live and breathe music, in every aspect. Besides being a piano technician he is also a trained musician and audio engineer.

As a sound engineer, Marcel has worked with people from all kinds of genres, from the Academy of Ancient Music to Boney M.  His own rock band has won several awards and continue to gig whenever they can.

With his extensive knowledge, Marcel truly understands every aspect of the piano and can act as a link between musician and instrument. His clients have included Imogen Cooper, Thom Yorke (Radiohead), John Cage, Benjamin Grosvenor, Radu Lupu, Rick Wakeman, Piere Laurent Aimard, Barry Douglas and many more.


Duncan Maletka

Duncan Maletka has been servicing the music industry in Cambridge and the East Anglia area for 28 years, managing the DV247/Digital Village/MusicVillage Cambridge store for much of that time before it closed in May 2013.  He currently runs the Piano Department at Cambridge Pianoforte.

Duncan is passionate about music, and his knowledge, dedication to his customers and general outlook on life have earned him hundreds of loyal customers in the Cambridge area and beyond. As a performing musician and composer, Duncan has the capability to tie together traditional and new technology developments and is only too pleased to answer any questions which are presented.


Tim Sparrow

Tim graduated from the Newark School of Violin Making, Restoration & Repair after a four year course in 2012 and has been with Cambridge Pianoforte, part-time, as our string specialist since 2013.

Classically trained on the violin to grade 5, Tim has been exclusively an accomplished English folk fiddler and mandolin player for many years and gigs regularly with his ceilidh band. He is also one of the musicians for a local Cotswold Morris Dancing team.

In 2017, we closed our string instrument department, however, Tim can still help with any problems you may have with your instrument, as well as provide advice on both the strings and accessories we still stock.


Cassian Bull

Cassian has been working for Cambridge Pianoforte, since 1987, and has a vast wealth of knowledge and experience when it comes to moving pianos. He has a sharp mind for assessing the practicalities of a removal and executes them with the greatest of care and skill.

Kai Lau

A classically trained violinist to grade 8 standard and grade 4 piano, Kai has been in various roles within his working career, twenty years plus of it in the retail sector, and was the manager of a well-known comic book store in Cambridge.

Feel free to give him a call or send him an email with your music enquiries and requests; you may even wish to pop into the store and have a tea or coffee while he sources your music for you.


Stephen Rowell

Stephen has moved pianos for the company for many years. Previously, he had been involved in logistics within the print industry and the transportation sector.  Prior to joining Pianoforte, Stephen spent over a decade working as a porter, as part of a team, at one of the Cambridge University Colleges.

Further to this, he decided to join Pianoforte where he can remain in a physically active role in a professional environment, solving problems and adding solutions to the demanding challenges within our daily business.


Laurence Fischer

Laurence joined the company in 2017 having completed his training as a tuner and technician at the Piano Technology School. His love for the instrument has thrown him head-first into the world of piano tuning, and he is delighted to be a member of Cambridge Pianoforte’s organisation.

Laurence’s musical career is long: from a Chorister at St. John’s, Cambridge, to a pianist at King’s College, London. His talent as a musician and pianist has won him several scholarships and awards, and taken him on tour all over the world. He has performed in a wide variety of venues and for varied occasions, including for the birthdays of Princes and even an Emperor.