Three Pianos in One Hour

I once accompanied a high school choir at their own version of the Music Artistry Program.

Since pianists don’t carry around their own instrument, we all learn how to adjust in the moment to each piano we play and create as beautiful of a sound as possible.

The only downside to this is that it doesn’t encourage proper care of a piano because to the untrained ear, people think the piano is great when in reality, it isn’t fun to play.

Over the years I have played some incredible pianos that did everything I wanted, and I’ve played my share of terrible pianos where keys and pedals didn’t work and were significantly out of tune.

At this particular choir event, I played a short upright in the warm-up room, followed by a 9-foot concert grand Steinway in the concert hall, followed by 5-foot grand in the room where the judge worked with the choir.

The short upright had unusual dimensions.  The music rack sat over the keyboard, so if my hands went up, they would hit it.  It was also a shallow piano, so I couldn’t move the music rack away from me where it would be easier to read.  I sat as far away from the piano as possible just to compensate for it.  It took extra work to play that piano.

When we moved on to the concert hall with the 9-ft Steinway, the dimensions of the piano were great.  I could move the music rack away from me; the bench was easily adjustable, and the tone of the piano was exquisite.  It was a joy to play that piano.

When we moved to the room where the judge worked with the choir, the 5-ft grand piano in that room played well, and I could move that music rack away from me.  However, when I looked at the keyboard itself, I was surprised to find an extra 1/4 inch of space after the key should have ended at the fallboard.  Don’t anyone with long fingers accidently get stuck in there!

Three different pianos in the space of an hour, and only one of them would I go back and play for fun.

A piano that is fun to play keeps pianists coming back for more.  When looking for your own piano, find the best piano you can afford, and watch your skills, confidence and fun soar.

Do not underestimate the value of choosing a quality instrument for your child to practice on.  It is an investment that will give back exactly what you put into it.

If you are thinking about piano lessons, we’d love to help.  Call us at 360-527-9626.  We also help all of our students find a suitable piano.  Click here for tips on buying a piano.  We look forward to hearing from you.


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