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#2035131 - 02/18/13 07:04 AM Coolest most unusual Friday afternoon  
Joined: May 2001
Posts: 10,797
Rich Galassini Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member
Rich Galassini  Offline
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Joined: May 2001
Posts: 10,797
Philadelphia/South Jersey
So this past Friday I was asked to go to a local university and speak with their grad. piano majors as part of a performance practices class.

No I did not coach them on their performances of Brahms and Schumann (Although I have an opinion on this as well). I was there to talk about the technical differences between the 2 or 3 21st century brands that all of these players knew and the 19th century instruments that the Romantic composers they were playing wrote for.

We were able to use a late 19th century Boesendorfer as an example. I also used overhead pictures of different period pianos that we have worked on, as well as professional diagrams of the actions, from Streicher (and earlier) to an early 20th century WNG action.

I HAD A BLAST! I wasn't given nearly enough time though. I feel like i could teach a semester class on the the technical aspects of the modern piano alone, let alone the major technical hurdles and the changes that the instrument has gone through into modern times.

Frankly, there were a few that did not care to hear about this. Questions were slow coming and of the 18 or so students that began with us only 9 stayed for a picture:

[Linked Image]
(I am the one on the immediate left of the piano)

Those who stayed though were really into it. I was asked some very insightful questions that really got ME thinking as well.

I wonder if anyone else, as a student, professor, or outside expert has lectured on this particular subject. I have not yet heard from the professor how she thought it went over. I hope she felt it went well because I have already thought through how I would do it differently next time.


Rich Galassini
Cunningham Piano Co.
Phila, Pa.
(215) 991-0834 direct line
rich@cunninghampiano.com
Check out the Science Channel's "How Its Made" featuring our piano restoration:
http://www.cunninghampiano.com/how-its-made/
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#2035134 - 02/18/13 07:22 AM Re: Coolest most unusual Friday afternoon [Re: Rich Galassini]  
Joined: Feb 2011
Posts: 2,511
Withindale Offline
2000 Post Club Member
Withindale  Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Joined: Feb 2011
Posts: 2,511
Suffolk, England
Originally Posted by Rich Galassini
I was there to talk about the technical differences between the 2 or 3 21st century brands that all of these players knew and the 19th century instruments that the Romantic composers they were playing wrote for.

We were able to use a late 19th century Boesendorfer as an example.

Very interesting. How did the late 19th century Boesendorfer sound in comparison with a modern instrument? I ask because the restorer described my Ibach (a late 19th century design) as late Romantic. How would you assess the tonal differences, then and now?


Ian Russell
Schiedmayer & Soehne, 1925 Model 14, 140cm
Ibach, 1905 F-IV, 235cm
#2035139 - 02/18/13 07:47 AM Re: Coolest most unusual Friday afternoon [Re: Rich Galassini]  
Joined: Mar 2006
Posts: 11,361
Rickster Offline
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Rickster  Offline
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Joined: Mar 2006
Posts: 11,361
Georgia, USA
Originally Posted by Rich Galassini
(I am the one on the immediate left of the piano)

I think everyone here would recognize you, Rich. smile You’re a celebrity on Piano World.

You seemed taller than the others... smile

It's good that you participate and help to promote music education. We need more of that...

Rick


Piano enthusiast and amateur musician: "Treat others the way you would like to be treated". Yamaha C7. YouTube Channel
#2035170 - 02/18/13 09:25 AM Re: Coolest most unusual Friday afternoon [Re: Withindale]  
Joined: May 2001
Posts: 10,797
Rich Galassini Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member
Rich Galassini  Offline
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Joined: May 2001
Posts: 10,797
Philadelphia/South Jersey
Originally Posted by Withindale
Very interesting. How did the late 19th century Boesendorfer sound in comparison with a modern instrument? I ask because the restorer described my Ibach (a late 19th century design) as late Romantic. How would you assess the tonal differences, then and now?


In short, Withindale, it was a more intimate tone. One could say that it also had many more shades within a particular color, like a set of pastels that are all blue, yet all different.

It was not designed to fill a large hall, and in fact, could not. However, in a smaller hall (we were in one that seats about 200 - 300) the piano performed with a sparkle and sweetness that was palpible.

I had fun. smile


Rich Galassini
Cunningham Piano Co.
Phila, Pa.
(215) 991-0834 direct line
rich@cunninghampiano.com
Check out the Science Channel's "How Its Made" featuring our piano restoration:
http://www.cunninghampiano.com/how-its-made/
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#2035178 - 02/18/13 09:41 AM Re: Coolest most unusual Friday afternoon [Re: Rich Galassini]  
Joined: May 2012
Posts: 7,439
Minnesota Marty Offline

Platinum Supporter until October 5 2014
Minnesota Marty  Offline

Platinum Supporter until October 5 2014


Joined: May 2012
Posts: 7,439
Rochester MN
Hi Rich,

This is so cool! I'm a little surprised that some class members didn't stay for the full presentation. Did all of the pianists have the chance to play and compare old vs. new?

Was the vintage Boesendorfer rebuilt/restored in your shop? How true is it to period construction?

If Cunningham did the work, good job on the leg turnings for the bench!


Marty in Minnesota

It's much easier to bash a Steinway than it is to play one.
#2035179 - 02/18/13 09:44 AM Re: Coolest most unusual Friday afternoon [Re: Rich Galassini]  
Joined: May 2001
Posts: 10,797
Rich Galassini Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member
Rich Galassini  Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Joined: May 2001
Posts: 10,797
Philadelphia/South Jersey
Marty,

We actually DID work on the piano, but it came to us as a refinished and "somewhat rebuilt" piano. We frankly had to fix a lot of mistakes.

We did not make the bench, but we could have! smile


Rich Galassini
Cunningham Piano Co.
Phila, Pa.
(215) 991-0834 direct line
rich@cunninghampiano.com
Check out the Science Channel's "How Its Made" featuring our piano restoration:
http://www.cunninghampiano.com/how-its-made/
#2035183 - 02/18/13 09:53 AM Re: Coolest most unusual Friday afternoon [Re: Rich Galassini]  
Joined: Feb 2011
Posts: 2,511
Withindale Offline
2000 Post Club Member
Withindale  Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Joined: Feb 2011
Posts: 2,511
Suffolk, England
Originally Posted by Rich Galassini
In short, Withindale, it was a more intimate tone. One could say that it also had many more shades within a particular color, like a set of pastels that are all blue, yet all different.

Who said no one can describe tone in words?

Originally Posted by Rich Galassini
We actually DID work on the piano, but it came to us as a refinished and "somewhat rebuilt" piano. We frankly had to fix a lot of mistakes.

Perhaps the Ibach should have come to you!



Ian Russell
Schiedmayer & Soehne, 1925 Model 14, 140cm
Ibach, 1905 F-IV, 235cm

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