I’m Robert Estrin. This is LivingPianos.com. Today I’m going to tell you about the man who could sight-read anything on the piano. Now that seems like a bold claim, so let me back up a bit and give you some perspective on this.

My father, Morton Estrin, would sight read anything, anytime, with anyone. For example, I remember once we were visiting my uncle Harvey Estrin. Harvey was a top-line studio musician in New York City, a woodwind man who played on many film scores, commercials, the ABC orchestra, and much more. His wife, Trudy Kane, was the principal flutist in the Metropolitan Opera Orchestra. We had a social visit, and Trudy handed my father the score of a piece he’d never even heard before. I believe it was the Reinecke Flute Sonata for flute and piano. Indeed, my father and Trudy played this together, and it was a beautiful performance – right at sight! I was amazed at the cohesiveness of the performance, and that he could sight read with that level of musicianship.

However, there are always limits, aren’t there?

I actually majored in both piano and French horn at the Manhattan School of Music. I played French horn from the time I was in fourth grade. My father was kind enough to accompany me whenever I’d ask him. As a matter of fact, I probably pushed that a little harder than I should have in retrospect, because he was very busy between his performing and teaching, but he was so gracious about it.

If any of you pianists out there have ever accompanied concertos, you probably know that many of them are incredibly awkward. For example, the Strauss Second Horn Concerto has so much going on in the orchestral writing, that if you look at the score, the piano reduction is filled with little notes in the orchestra part that you can’t possibly play on the piano. There aren’t enough fingers in the hands!

Sometimes there are other problems. A good example of this is, the Telemann Horn Concerto. Telemann is credited with composing more music than any other composer who ever lived, so this is a rather obscure work, except maybe to French hornists! My father was kind enough to accompany me on this. In fact, I still have the music to that piece, and in looking at the score, I can see that he wrote in fingering. So, he practiced this piece. The orchestra part has repeated 16th notes in the right hand. Repeated notes on the strings is easy. The bow goes back and forth. On the piano, it’s not so easy. You can see why my father wrote in fingerings for this.

The man who could sight-read anything is the great pianist John Ogdon.

John Ogden won the Tchaikovsky International Piano Competition the same year Vladimir Ashkenazy won it. They tied for first place. John Ogdon had an illustrious career. His recordings of the Brahms Concertos, his Liszt recordings (and more) reveal spectacular playing! I was fortunate enough to study with him during my time at Indiana University

It came to our attention, all of us who studied with him at Indiana University, that he could sight-read anything. So, we would come into lessons and put scores in front of him. It seemed like there was nothing he couldn’t read! But, I wondered if maybe he knew the pieces.

One day he invited me to his home and he told me to bring my horn; he’d accompany me.

I couldn’t believe it! I brought a stack of music. And just for fun, I brought that Telemann Concerto with that impossible piano part. What I haven’t told you yet is that as hard as the repeated 16th notes in the right hand are, underneath those were eighth notes in the right hand. So every other note, you’ve got a note underneath it in the tenor line, and that’s just the right hand! My father didn’t even bother trying to play those other notes. And he had practiced to the point of writing in fingerings just to be able to negotiate the repeated notes!

I put the score in front of John Ogdon. He said, “I’ve never seen this.” And I said, “Well, it goes kind of fast.” He sailed into it even faster than I played it and nailed it perfectly. He didn’t leave out any notes! If I hadn’t seen this with my own eyes and heard it with my own ears, I would tell anyone that this is absolutely impossible. But yet, John Ogdon could read anything.

That is my story about John Ogden’s incredible sight-reading ability. I hope that you’ve enjoyed this story – and there’s lots more videos coming your way. Thanks for joining me, Robert Estrin, here at LivingPianos.com, Your Online Piano Store.

info@LivingPianos.com
949-244-3729

The Man Who Could Sight-Read Anything On the Piano

I’m Robert Estrin. This is LivingPianos.com. Today I’m going to tell you about the man who could sight-read anything on the piano. Now that seems like a bold claim, so let me back up a bit and give you some perspective on this. My father,

Welcome to LivingPianos.com. I’m Robert Estrin and today I’m going to share my personal story of meeting the great pianist, Arthur Rubinstein! I’ve been very fortunate in my life to have heard many great concert pianists over the years. Beginning with my father, Morton Estrin. A great concert pianist right in my home! His studio where he did most of his teaching was in our home. So I got to hear so many great students of his and the piano was a big part of our household. I have heard a lot of great pianists in my life. One such pianist is Vladimir Horowitz.

The first time I heard Horowitz is quite a story in itself.

Horowitz was making one of his famous comebacks. He would take time off from performing so when he came back to the concert stage, it was always a major event. He was performing at the Metropolitan Opera House in Lincoln Center. It was limited to two tickets per person and we knew it was going to sell out quickly. I was attending the Manhattan School of Music at the time. Some other students and I decided to camp out overnight at Lincoln Center. We got there at about 8:30 the night before, tickets didn’t go on sale until the next morning around 6:00 or 7:00. And I was number 311 in line already!

Interestingly, I had a brief encounter with Vladimir Horowitz and Mrs Horowitz, who came by at about 2:30 in the morning with coffee and donuts for everyone in line. I thought that was really classy. A couple months later he was performing at Carnegie Hall. My teacher Constance Keane was really good friends with the Horowitz’s and was able to get me tickets, as many as I wanted. And I had box seats! So that was a lot easier.

Meeting Arthur Rubinstein

Rubinstein on his 80th birthday gave a concert and our family went. And it was an incredible experience. Even though I was just a kid, I was captivated by the beauty of the tone. It was an amazing experience. After the performance my family decided to go backstage to say something to the great Rubinstein. I was young, but I wasn’t so young. I’m actually a little embarrassed to admit how old I was. I was trying to think about what to say to this legendary pianist. But in the moment, all that came out of me was “You must be a very busy man.” To this day my family still mocks me a little bit for that.

So my advice to any of you, if you’re going to meet a great artist of any sort, think in advance what you might say to them. If I could only turn the clock back, I think of all the things I could have asked the great Arthur Rubinstein. I hope that you’ve enjoyed this story – and there’s lots more videos coming your way. Thanks for joining me, Robert Estrin, here at LivingPianos.com, Your Online Piano Store.

info@LivingPianos.com
949-244-3729

Meeting Arthur Rubinstein

Welcome to LivingPianos.com. I’m Robert Estrin and today I’m going to share my personal story of meeting the great pianist, Arthur Rubinstein! I’ve been very fortunate in my life to have heard many great concert pianists over the ye

Today we’re going to talk about the importance of reflecting upon your practice by taking strategic breaks.

How is taking a walk in the middle of your practicing beneficial?

When you’re immersed in practicing, after awhile you need to reflect on things. Not only that, you’re doing everything with your upper body. It’s good for you to get out and get some air and get the blood flowing throughout your body. It will also give you an opportunity to assimilate what you have been working on.

Reflecting on your practicing

One way to digest your work is to analyze what you have done in your practice. You can play your music over mentally and work out fingerings while testing how much of the music you have retained. That’s the left brain or Western way of quantifying knowledge – the analytical part of your brain. However, perhaps even more important is to detach yourself from analytical thinking and clearing your mind. This is a more of a Zen approach. If you never get away from the music to enjoy life, what do you have to share with your music anyway?

Why it’s not just about playing the piano or practicing

This principle isn’t just about practicing the piano. It applies to practically any endeavor! You need to get out and smell the flowers to have a chance to simply be – not just try to accomplish things. In the process, you will discover something extraordinary. The analytical part of your mind will help you solidify memory. I’ve talked about practicing away from the piano and that can be incredibly beneficial. But what is equally important is detaching your mind from everything and being in the now!

Maintaining an intense practice regimen.

Those of you who are practicing intensely on a regular basis will be surprised at how getting away periodically will increase your productivity. While intense practice certainly has an essential role in developing your musical skills, getting away from it all is just as important.

I hope this is helpful and thanks for joining me, Robert Estrin here at LivingPianos.com Your Online Piano Store

info@LivingPianos.com
949-244-3729

Can You Practice the Piano too Much?

Today we’re going to talk about the importance of reflecting upon your practice by taking strategic breaks. How is taking a walk in the middle of your practicing beneficial? When you’re immersed in practicing, after awhile you need to reflect on

I’m Robert Estrin from LivingPianos.com. Today’s topic is, “The Secrets of Interlocking Octaves on the Piano.” What are interlocking octaves? It’s a great technique that creates a dazzling sound and it’s actually easier than it sounds! It’s always nice to have something that sounds hard but isn’t all that hard to play.

A good example of this is the end of the B-minor scherzo of Chopin. There’s a chromatic scale that goes all the way up the piano. But some people like to play interlocking octaves instead of just a simple chromatic scale. How do you do that? I’m going to show you the trick to it. It’s so easy!

Interlocking octaves are easier to play than the chromatic scale and it sounds very impressive.

Even though Chopin didn’t compose this section in octaves, a lot of pianists play it that way. I like to play it with interlocking octaves. It caps off the finale of this incredibly energetic piece – a final burst of musical energy. So how is this done? First of all, you have to know how to play octaves. I have other videos on that subject. You can click here to check it out:

THE BEST PIANO EXERCISES (PART 4) – OCTAVES

To play a chromatic scale with two hands interlocking, each hand is playing a whole tone scale.

A chromatic scale is every single key on the piano, black and white next to each other, while a whole tone scale is every other key on the piano. So, the left hand plays a whole tone scale and the right hand plays the other notes of the chromatic scale, creating another whole tone scale. That’s the way it works. And when you put them together, indeed your thumbs are playing a chromatic scale. So there’s a chromatic scale with the thumbs. Just add the pinkies and you have interlocking octaves. That’s the secret to interlocking octaves!

If you can play octaves, interlocking octaves are a piece of cake. And as I said, they sound very impressive. It’s a virtuoso sound that doesn’t take virtuoso technique – just good octave technique. You too can play interlocking octaves like at the end of the Chopin B-minor scherzo. I hope this has been helpful for you. I’m Robert Estrin here at LivingPianos.com, Your Online Piano Store.

info@LivingPianos.com
949-244-3729

The Secrets of Interlocking Octaves on the Piano

I’m Robert Estrin from LivingPianos.com. Today’s topic is, “The Secrets of Interlocking Octaves on the Piano.” What are interlocking octaves? It’s a great technique that creates a dazzling sound and it’s actually e

Welcome to LivingPianos.com. I’m Robert Estrin and today’s question is, “How Do You Find the Serial Number on Your Piano?” There are a number of reasons why you might want to know your piano’s serial number. The piano’s age, along with its condition, and any repair work done to it will affect its value. You need to know this if you’re considering buying or selling your piano, or for an insurance claim or charitable tax deduction. You might also need to know the serial number for a bill of sale, insurance rider, warranty claim or moving or storage receipt. The serial number determines the age of your piano. Once you find it, you can reference the Pierce Piano Atlas, which has all the piano brands with the serial numbers, so you can determine when your Piano was built.

Where can you find the serial number on your piano?

If you look inside your piano at the plate, you may find a date and think your work is done. But it’s not so simple. In fact, the date of manufacture is never stamped on a piano. These dates usually refer to prizes that were won or patents that were awarded, but never the date of manufacture. So you’ve got to dig a little bit deeper. If you’re looking at a grand piano, the first place to look is under the music rack. You can simply slide the music rack out towards you. Underneath, usually on the left hand side on the plate, you’ll see a series of numbers. That can very well be the serial number of your piano. Reference the Pierce Atlas, and you’re done. But sometimes, you’ll see two sets of numbers or even more. It can be very confusing.

There are other numbers you may encounter.

Model numbers generally are letters and sometimes they have numbers in them. So, if you see a letter followed by a bunch of numbers, the first letter might just be the model, followed by the serial number. Over on the right hand side, you might see less digits. This could be an in house numbering system they used when they were manufacturing the piano, or sometimes it’s an artist number for concert grand pianos. Suppose the piano has been regilded, that is, the plate has been painted over. Does that mean you can’t figure out the serial number? Well, the good news is, pianos almost always have the serial number in more than one place. And the serial number isn’t always found on the plate.

There are several other places a serial number can be found.

Sometimes the serial number is stamped into the soundboard, usually towards the front of the piano. Look at the soundboard and you might see numbers. I’ve seen it on the back of the soundboard or even in the rim of the piano, under where the lid lifts up. Like I say, sometimes it takes a lot of detective work to find the serial number on your piano! Now, suppose you look all over the place inside the piano, but you still don’t see it. Well, then you have to go a little bit further.

Something you can do on your own that’s not that hard, is to take the key slip off in front of the keys. Some pianos, it just lifts out. Others might have several screws underneath you take out. Carefully lift up the key slip. You’ll may see the serial number on the key slip itself stamped into the wood. Or it could possibly be on the key frame of the action of the piano. No luck? You still have some possibilities. You can check underneath the piano. Take a flashlight under the piano and look around. Typically, it will be behind the pedal lyre on the piece of wood behind the pedal assembly. But I’ve seen it in other places down there. Sometimes, even on the bottom of the soundboard!

You might want help from a piano technician.

If you haven’t found the serial number yet, you may want to have your piano technician look for it, because you can potentially damage the piano taking it apart yourself. Your piano technician can possibly find the serial number by removing the action and taking out the cheek block screws on the ends of the piano. Once the key slip has been removed, the fallboard can sometimes lift out. But with older pianos, the fallboard is attached to the cheek blocks and this can be tricky to take out because they can fall off. This is why you should use a piano technician. The serial number is oftentimes stamped on the cheek blocks. If you still can’t find the serial number, then you can have your piano technician pull the whole action out a bit. The serial number might be stamped somewhere else on the action. If not, have your piano technician pull the action out completely, put it safely on a piano bench or a table, and hunt inside the piano with a flashlight to find the serial number.

You didn’t think this was going to be so complicated, did you? Well, the good news is, most of the time it’s not. Generally the serial number is on the plate, but now you have some resources just in case it’s not there.

Are there pianos with no serial number at all?

Yes, this can happen when a manufacturer puts the serial number on the plate or another part of the piano that has been replaced. If the plate was regilded or the soundboard was replaced, you might have no way of determining the serial number, or even the manufacturer of a piano! On some stencil pianos, that is OEM pianos that are produced by third party manufactures, it’s all but impossible to figure out not just a serial number, but even the make of a piano!

Where is the serial number found on upright pianos?

Most often the serial number on upright pianos will be right in the front. Open up the top and look inside. If you don’t see it there, you can look around back and sometimes you’ll see the serial number stamped in the back of the piano.

I’m Robert Estrin here at LivingPianos.com, Your Online Piano Store. See you next time.

info@LivingPianos.com
949-244-3729

How Do You Find the Serial Number on Your Piano?

Welcome to LivingPianos.com. I’m Robert Estrin and today’s question is, “How Do You Find the Serial Number on Your Piano?” There are a number of reasons why you might want to know your piano’s serial number. The piano

I’m Robert Estrin with LivingPianos.com. Today’s topic is, “The Two Brains in Music.” I’ve talked before about the part of you that’s playing, almost on autopilot, and the part of you watching over to make sure you don’t take a wrong turn. Today I’m talking about something entirely different.

We have our intellect, but we also have our emotions, the gut. You know this because sometimes you react to something even before you are cognizant of what’s going on. You just get a feeling about something before your brain even understands what is happening. And yet it gives you vital information about your surroundings.

There is an aspect of intelligence in your emotions.

In music, there is a balance between your intellect and your emotions. This transcends just musical performance. But how does this come to be? I studied with Constance Keene at the Manhattan School of Music. She was a spectacular pianist and teacher, and I learned a tremendous amount from her. One of the things that she said was that musical performance is not experiencing the emotion, but recreating memories of the emotions. That’s an interesting thought, and that’s a very cerebral way of playing the piano. Do all pianists play like that? Not necessarily. Particularly, a lot of pianists from the Golden Era early in the 20th century, such as Cortot, Schnabel, or Horowitz. Horowitz never played the same pieces twice the same way, so he offered spontaneous performances every time!

Balance emotions and intelligence in performance.

You can’t play the piano solely with your emotion because you will completely flop. You might play too fast, loud, slow, or quiet. You have to have intelligence balanced with emotion to stay in control of the performance. A performance completely devoid of emotion, no matter how technically proficient it is, is not going to draw you in. You have to have the emotion that lets the music go where it wants to go, even if you haven’t gone there before. It’s a little bit scary. If you’re playing a piece in a public performance, and something occurs to you that you never tried before., you have to make a decision. You can either listen to your brain and play it the way you’ve always played it before. Or, you can think, “Wait a minute, let’s explore this.” going with that emotion. Then you can react to whatever you did, and it becomes a cycle of emotions. That’s when you can really capture your audience!

You have to be incredibly well prepared in order to do this.

I would not recommend you do this in an important public performance unless you are really solid with your repertoire. The secret is being so well prepared in your practice that you try things faster, slower, louder, softer. You practice on different pianos, with the piano open, with the piano closed. You play for small groups, large groups. You record yourself. That way, when you finally get out to an important performance, you can choose a little of this, a little of that, and mold a unique performance based upon what you feel at that moment. That can be one of the most compelling types of performances possible, if you’ve got the inclination for it.

Other performers rely more on refinement.

Ruth Slenczynska is another pianist I had the pleasure of studying with. Her whole thing was refinement to such an extent that her performances were masterfully polished. Much like Josef Lhévinne or Josef Hoffman, with jewel-like perfection. Once, she was teaching a class with all her students, and a student asked her to play the Chopin G Minor Ballade for us. Even though she had performed this piece many times, she said, “Oh no, I haven’t been practicing it. I’d have to play it slower.” Well, he kept begging her and finally she said, “Okay, I’ll play it for you.” And indeed, she played it slower so it could be totally under her control! That’s the kind of pianist she was.

My father, Morton Estrin, on the other hand, if somebody were to ask him to play the G Minor Ballade he would just go for it the best he could. He wouldn’t make any concessions to the music. He would play the emotion and have a satisfying performance, even if it wasn’t perfect. That’s the way his mind worked. It’s not a right or wrong proposition, but it’s how much you depend upon intelligence or refinement vs. how much you depend upon emotion. Every musician needs to find a balance they are comfortable with.

I hope this has been enlightening for you. I would love to get a discussion going about this.
Thanks so much for joining us here at LivingpPianos.com, Your Online Piano Store.

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The Two Brains in Music

I’m Robert Estrin with LivingPianos.com. Today’s topic is, “The Two Brains in Music.” I’ve talked before about the part of you that’s playing, almost on autopilot, and the part of you watching over to make sure you

This is Robert Estrin at LivingPianos.com Your Online Piano Store, with groundbreaking news about the future of the piano industry in the United States! I’m so pleased to have Michael Stilwell of Stilwell Pianos in Arizona and the head of the Piano Technicians Academy here with us today. Welcome Michael.

Michael: Thank you so much for having me.

Robert: You’re here today not just for this video, and not just to talk about the future of the piano industry, but how we are impacting the future of the piano industry together. The big news is that we are partnering to bring more pianos to more people throughout the United States and beyond! It’s so important because of how the piano industry has declined in this country. But before we go any further, just to introduce people to you, I want everybody to know how you got into the piano business to begin with.

Michael: I’m a third generation piano technician. My grandfather, Ralph Stilwell, started Stilwell Pianos in 1956 in Decatur, Illinois as an in-home service business. So we would tune pianos in people’s homes. We did rebuilds, regulation, new hammers, strings and things like that. I got into the business when I was 18 and I went to piano tuning school. My grandfather was in Decatur, Illinois and I was in Arizona. So, I needed help! Luckily, my grandfather was very well known in our industry. He was the head technician for Yamaha North America, for all of the United States. He developed awesome relationships with some big wig technicians. And when I wanted to get into the industry, he asked some of them to take me under their wing. So I trained with some of those guys and eventually took over the family business.

I spent the first seven years of my career tuning, regulating, voicing and stuff like that. And then while I was on my way to dinner with a friend I was hit by a car. It broke my right wrist; my tuning wrist. I was married and I needed to make money. So, I started buying pianos and selling them out of my house. I also started developing a course on piano technology.

That is the starting point of the Piano Technician Academy, which is the largest online piano tuning school in the world.

We were the first to go online and pioneered that using videography, web development, and e-learning. That’s been a really fun part of what I do, absorbing the tech side. I’m able to use my technician background in the sales process and buying process, making sure that we’re buying good pianos and, most importantly, that we’re selling good pianos. That knowledge allows me to make sure our pianos are dialed in perfectly every single day!

Robert: That’s what’s great about having a store full of piano technicians! What I find interesting is our parallel development. You grew up with piano technicians in your family going back generations. For me, it’s musicians. My father was a concert pianist, my sister is a pianist, my whole extended family are musicians!

The way I got into the piano business was from teaching piano lessons.

I started teaching piano in high school as an assistant to my father, as my sister had done before me. When I was teaching, people would call me for lessons. The first question I would always ask is, “Do you have a piano?” If they didn’t have a piano, they wouldn’t be able to learn. So, I ended up finding pianos for people and realized what a need there was for that.

I’m very excited about us helping to mitigate the decline of the piano industry in the United States.

I would venture to say that both of our missions are to revitalize the piano industry in this country. And we do this by offering pianos online that have never been available before, and in much greater numbers with the power that we bring to bear combining our companies.

Michael:

This is the only industry that sells high ticket items that doesn’t do it online.

There is this idea that you have to play the piano first, you want to touch it and see it. But both of us have ventured into online sales, especially Living Pianos, and the amount of pianos that we sell on the internet is a sign of the times.

I’m married and I have four kids under seven. My wife buys groceries online. I’ll talk to her at 10 in the morning and ask, “What’s for dinner tonight?” She will respond, “I don’t know. I’ll call up Whoe Foods and it’ll just get delivered.” But for some reason the piano industry hasn’t gotten to that point. So, what Living Pianos has done with their video studio, filming all of the pianos and demonstrating the true tone, describing the real feel, helps people appreciate how these pianos sound and play. This is opening up opportunities for people to buy pianos this industry just hasn’t seen before. I’m super excited about it!

Robert: It’s a great opportunity for us to be working together and I’m looking forward to it. Thanks so much for joining us today. I’ve been talking with Michael Stilwell of Stilwell Pianos in Arizona and the Piano Technicians Academy. I’m Robert Estrin here at LivingPianos.com, Your Online Piano Store.

The Future of the Piano Industry

This is Robert Estrin at LivingPianos.com Your Online Piano Store, with groundbreaking news about the future of the piano industry in the United States! I’m so pleased to have Michael Stilwell of Stilwell Pianos in Arizona and the head of the P

I’m Robert Estrin. This is LivingPianos.com. Today’s topic is, “How Long Does a Piano Last?” This is a really fascinating subject, and there’s more to it than you might imagine.

There are many considerations for how long a piano will last.

The quality of the instrument, the environment where the instrument lives, how much the instrument is played, and the how often the piano is serviced, all enter into how long a piano lasts. These are all factors that contribute to the wear and tear of a piano. If I was to throw out a number, I’d say a fine piano can last 50 to 100 years. But could a piano really last that long? It depends. You couldn’t expect to buy a bottom tier Chinese or Indonesian piano, subject it to a harsh climate, play it for hours a day, and for it to last anywhere close to 50 years without major work. But well built and properly maintained pianos can last generations.

We see some older instruments in immaculate condition.

Right now at Living Pianos, the oldest piano we currently have is a Steinway concert grand built in 1875. The piano has been masterfully rebuilt, so it plays like it did when it was young.

You can click on this link to see the piano:
Steinway

The record for the oldest piano we ever had with all original parts was a 1907 Steinway Model O. We had two of our technicians go through this piano inside and out, determining that absolutely everything was original. Nothing was worn. Because it was a Steinway, if it needed new strings or new hammers or anything else, we would have put the work into it. But it was determined that we would just be replacing perfectly good parts.

How can a piano last so long?

If you have a piano here in Southern California and it’s in a stable environment, kept closed, away from sunlight, stable temperature, stable humidity, barely ever played, and tuned on a regular basis, indeed, a piano could be a hundred years old and play like new. Of course, for every piano like that, there are tens of thousands that are long since gone. There is no set amount of time that a piano will last. You have to know the history of the instrument.

How do you find the history of a piano?

Pianos don’t have a paper trail like cars or houses do. You have to do some simple detective work. Just look inside the piano for signs of corrosion around the strings and pins. Look at the hammers to see how much felt is left on them. Wiggle the keys. If they make a clicking sound, that means the felt bushings are worn. So pianos could be worn out. They can also get thrashed from the environment, and they can be neglected. If a piano hasn’t been tuned for 5, 10 or 15 years, it can take its toll when you tune it since it could add thousands of pounds of string tension compromising the structure of the piano.

The year of manufacturer tells you very little about how long that piano is going to last.

If a piano is kept in a harsh environment it will age much faster. If a piano is kept near the beach, it could be rusted out. In a school or restaurant, a piano might be worn out in as little as 10 years from heavy use. And yet, there are pre-World War II pianos in immaculate condition. Certainly with rebuilt pianos, it doesn’t necessarily matter how old they are. If the fundamental structure is good and the rebuilding work was top quality, a rebuilt piano can last as long as a new piano. You may get another 50 to 100 years out of a well rebuilt piano! Your mileage may vary. And that is the message for today.

If any of you are wondering about the condition of your piano we can help you. Write to us at: info@livingpianos.com.

Thanks for joining us here at LivingPianos.com, Your Online Piano Store.
949-244-3729

How Long Does a Piano Last?

I’m Robert Estrin. This is LivingPianos.com. Today’s topic is, “How Long Does a Piano Last?” This is a really fascinating subject, and there’s more to it than you might imagine. There are many considerations for how long

This is Robert Estrin. Welcome to livingpianos.com. Today’s topic is: “Where to Place a Piano in Your Home“. Pianos come in all different lengths from around five feet all the way to over nine feet. Most people don’t have a nine foot concert grand in their home! A piano that size requires a large room that can handle not just the size of the piano, but the sound as well. The bigger the piano, the more volume they create.

How to place upright pianos.

I have a video about WHERE TO PUT AN UPRIGHT PIANO IN A ROOM. Upright pianos are all about five feet wide, because of the 88 keys, and they come a couple feet out from the wall. You also want to allow extra space for when the bench is pulled out. Here’s the key though: if you leave some space between the back of the piano and the wall, you’ll get a much richer sound because most of the sound of an upright comes from the back. If the piano is right against the wall, it soaks up the sound. Now on the flip side, if an upright piano is too loud, put it up against the wall or better yet against some curtains and it will be much quieter.

Placing baby grand and grand pianos.

A lot of people think upright pianos are easier to place in a home, but it’s actually easier to place a grand piano than an upright! Ideally, you want to place your grand piano so it opens into the room. It’s nice to have the piano situated in this respect so you can see the keys and the inside of the piano. However, even though this is the typical way that pianos are placed on stage for concerts, in your home it isn’t necessary. It doesn’t matter how you position your piano, you’re going to hear it fine throughout your home. They can tuck into a corner and look quite lovely and sound fine. Or maybe you prefer to sit looking into the room when you’re playing the piano. All of these ways work fine.

Place your piano where you can enjoy it!

If you have an open floor plan, the volume of the piano could be an issue for people in other parts of the house. You want to think about that. You never want to have your piano in a place where you don’t want people to play it because it’s disturbing to you or your neighbors! If a grand piano is too loud, you can put a rug underneath to soak up the sound. With a grand piano, just like the back of an upright, half the sound comes from underneath, or almost all the sound when the lid is closed.

Do what works best for you.

There are many different ways you can place your piano. Baby grands and grands are actually easier to place than upright pianos. They look good any way, and you are going to hear it in your home whether the lid is facing one way or the other. Ultimately where you place a piano in your home comes down to personal preference. So give some thought to where the piano will look and sound best, and will fit in with your lifestyle.

Any of you who have questions about placing a piano in your home, you’re welcome to take pictures and send them to us at info@LivingPianos.com, and we’ll be happy to give you advice about how to place your piano. Thanks for joining us here at livingpianos.com, Your Online Piano Store

Where to Place a Piano in Your Home

This is Robert Estrin. Welcome to livingpianos.com. Today’s topic is: “Where to Place a Piano in Your Home“. Pianos come in all different lengths from around five feet all the way to over nine feet. Most people don’t have a ni