You can spend a few hundred bucks on a used upright piano, or hundreds of thousands or more on a concert grand. So what’s the difference? Musician Vinheteiro decided to play the same passage of music on six pianos of escalating values to see if we could tell them apart. Once we got past $50,000, we had trouble.
Rescue & Restore found an old metal toy piano rusting away in a barn, then carefully disassembled it, satisfyingly sandblasted off the rust, powder-coated it, and cleaned and restored its mechanism – which was basically a xylophone with keys. The resulting restoration is quite impressive.
Ukrainian band Brunettes Shoot Blondes found an old, broken down grand piano, and decided to partially gut it, filling its innards with a variety of analog instruments, mechanically connected to its keys. The resulting sound on their track Houston is remarkably rich and full.
LEGO Ideas contributor Sleepy Cow created this 2,798 piece model of a grand piano which features 25 working keys, complete with strings, pedals, and dampers. It doesn’t actually play music, but it’s still a mechanical marvel. If you’d like to see it produced, vote here.
Unlike other player pianos, the Arpeggio is a self-contained robot which can drive up to the keyboard and pedals on a regular piano, and perform in place of a human pianist, replicating the most intricate and nuanced elements of a previously-recorded performance.
Pianist and composer Nikolai Kapustin is known for his unique virtuoso pieces, which fuse the playful chaos of jazz with the perfectionist stamp of classical music. Pianist Dimitry Masleev demonstrates Kapustin’s music in this first-person performance of Toccatina Op. 40.