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#1661611 - 04/17/11 12:50 AM Jobs As a Pianist? Curious
TylerNB Offline
Full Member

Registered: 10/21/10
Posts: 301
Loc: U.S.A.
I have always wondered about this. Because the most common jobs I hear about as a pianist is a piano teacher and a concert pianist. I was wondering though. Are there more jobs than this, and if so, what are they?
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#1661613 - 04/17/11 12:56 AM Re: Jobs As a Pianist? Curious [Re: TylerNB]
ando Online   content
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/23/10
Posts: 4024
Loc: Melbourne, Australia
Session musician
Ballet school accompanist
General accompanist
Member of a band
Restaurant/bar pianist
Social club pianist
Chamber musician
Small theater company musician
Music therapist
Retirement Village pianist
Street performer

Not sure how many you want, but that should get you started.

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#1661682 - 04/17/11 06:54 AM Re: Jobs As a Pianist? Curious [Re: TylerNB]
Kreisler Offline



Registered: 11/27/02
Posts: 13825
Loc: Iowa City, IA
_________________________
"If we continually try to force a child to do what he is afraid to do, he will become more timid, and will use his brains and energy, not to explore the unknown, but to find ways to avoid the pressures we put on him." (John Holt)

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www.youtube.com/user/UIPianoPed

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#1661713 - 04/17/11 09:48 AM Re: Jobs As a Pianist? Curious [Re: TylerNB]
Arghhh Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/31/08
Posts: 1216
Concert pianist is certainly a job that many aspire to, but I wouldn't call it a common job because the large majority of people who study piano do not end up as a concert pianist.

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#1661757 - 04/17/11 12:09 PM Re: Jobs As a Pianist? Curious [Re: Arghhh]
feebeeliszt Offline
Full Member

Registered: 05/30/10
Posts: 414
Loc: London
Originally Posted By: Arghhh
Concert pianist is certainly a job that many aspire to, but I wouldn't call it a common job because the large majority of people who study piano do not end up as a concert pianist.

Even the most talented pianist I know have to do a mixture of concert pianist and 2,3 jobs from Kreisler's list...
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The notes I handle no better than many pianists. But the pauses between the notes - ah, that is where the art resides! - Schnabel

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#1661795 - 04/17/11 01:33 PM Re: Jobs As a Pianist? Curious [Re: TylerNB]
La Vega Offline
Full Member

Registered: 06/04/09
Posts: 124
Loc: Oakland, CA
Interestingly enough, I just watched The Fabulous Baker Boys last night. Very good movie, actually, and a big part of the story was the need to earn a living versus following your dreams.

As much as I enjoy playing piano, I don't think I'd ever want to make a living from it, and not just because it's difficult to do so. Piano would become just a job at that point, and I can't help thinking some of the magic would drain away.



Edited by La Vega (04/17/11 01:35 PM)
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#1661814 - 04/17/11 02:05 PM Re: Jobs As a Pianist? Curious [Re: TylerNB]
Copake Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/27/08
Posts: 257
Loc: Columbia/Westchester Counties ...
Unfortunately here is a report of one gig that seems to be disappearing.

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#1661820 - 04/17/11 02:18 PM Re: Jobs As a Pianist? Curious [Re: Copake]
riley80 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 08/03/08
Posts: 404
Loc: Florida
Oh, gosh - that just brought back a memory of an old dept. store which had a real sheet music dept. An older woman would bang out all the pop tunes you wanted on an old upright. I got the feeling she was banging out hymns somewhere on a Sunday. Nice, non-pressure job, but I bet she got sick of playing the same old top 40..

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#1661888 - 04/17/11 04:55 PM Re: Jobs As a Pianist? Curious [Re: Copake]
Mark_C Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/11/09
Posts: 20059
Loc: New York
Originally Posted By: Copake
Unfortunately here is a report of one gig that seems to be disappearing.

Huh......that's Nordstrom!

Copake: Since you're a fellow Westchester person....do you know that the Nordstrom in White Plains has a piano on their 2nd floor, in the men's clothing section?
And if you talk to them nicely, they'll let you try it. smile
I've run through a couple of pieces on it now and then.

But anyway I think they haven't had a hired pianist for a while either.
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"Everything I say is my opinion, including the facts." :-)

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#1662021 - 04/17/11 10:26 PM Re: Jobs As a Pianist? Curious [Re: TylerNB]
Arghhh Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/31/08
Posts: 1216
Just came across this article from musician wages:
jobs


Edited by Arghhh (04/17/11 10:26 PM)
Edit Reason: fix stupid spelling error

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#1662180 - 04/18/11 07:52 AM Re: Jobs As a Pianist? Curious [Re: Mark_C]
Copake Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/27/08
Posts: 257
Loc: Columbia/Westchester Counties ...
Originally Posted By: Mark_C
Originally Posted By: Copake
Unfortunately here is a report of one gig that seems to be disappearing.

Huh......that's Nordstrom!

Copake: Since you're a fellow Westchester person....do you know that the Nordstrom in White Plains has a piano on their 2nd floor, in the men's clothing section?
And if you talk to them nicely, they'll let you try it. smile
I've run through a couple of pieces on it now and then.

But anyway I think they haven't had a hired pianist for a while either.


Mark: The last time I passed through that department the Steinway grand was locked. I do recall that they had a pianist when the store first opened. Let me know the next time you plan to tickle the ivories at Nordstrom and I will drop in.

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#1662213 - 04/18/11 09:13 AM Re: Jobs As a Pianist? Curious [Re: TylerNB]
Numerian Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/04/05
Posts: 1076
Let me guess. Someone in corporate marketing does a study of muzak vs. piano music by a live performer in their stores. They discover that muzak is generally used by retail outlets to manipulate the mood of shoppers. Mid-morning is soothing, quiet music. By late afternoon the volume has turned up and bouncy music helps people get energized. I'm sure studies have been done to show how music motivates sales. Plus, notice that muzak is typically not comprised of music you may know - management doesn't want shoppers to associate a particular song with a personal memory they have. Instead the music is bland enough that you don't notice it consciously but your mood is affected nonetheless.

As an added benefit, get rid of the piano player, and maybe young people will come into the store (Nordstrom is under the illusion that young people can afford anything in their stores). Retailers always want young people shopping around no matter how penniless they may be.

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#1662217 - 04/18/11 09:26 AM Re: Jobs As a Pianist? Curious [Re: Copake]
Dave Horne Offline
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/07/04
Posts: 5293
Loc: Vught, The Netherlands
Originally Posted By: Copake
Unfortunately here is a report of one gig that seems to be disappearing.


Everyone's cutting back and the solo pianist is the first to go. I've never played in Nordstrom's but always thought live music (especially on a grand piano) gave the store a touch of class.
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#1662218 - 04/18/11 09:32 AM Re: Jobs As a Pianist? Curious [Re: TylerNB]
Dave Horne Offline
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/07/04
Posts: 5293
Loc: Vught, The Netherlands
If you can read reasonably well and can improvise, the US military needs piano players for their bands. (I've heard all the jokes.)

I spent 20 years in a professional big band and was required also to play the organ for hockey games, solo cocktail piano\combo piano\whatever for visiting dignitaries. The job paid me to practice for 20 years and gave me an education in reading thousands of charts.

With the music business the way it is today, a lot of those jobs is really word of mouth even though the military advertises. If you know someone, just like in most businesses, that can count for more than talent. Also, if a guy has one of those jobs (with the business the way it is today) it's more than likely he'll stay until they kick him out.

Here's a link you can look at ... http://bands.army.mil/jobs/
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#1662235 - 04/18/11 10:17 AM Re: Jobs As a Pianist? Curious [Re: Copake]
Mark_C Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/11/09
Posts: 20059
Loc: New York
Copake: Thanks for being interested! I'd be delighted to let you know. My drop-ins over there are often last-minute/spur-of-the-moment, but we'll see what we can do. smile

P.S. Let me say, how about you likewise in return, if you're thinking of trying to do an impromptu 'gig' over there....
_________________________
"Everything I say is my opinion, including the facts." :-)

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#1662267 - 04/18/11 10:53 AM Re: Jobs As a Pianist? Curious [Re: Copake]
BruceD Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/26/01
Posts: 18709
Loc: Victoria, BC
Originally Posted By: Copake
[...]Mark: The last time I passed through that department the Steinway grand was locked. I do recall that they had a pianist when the store first opened. Let me know the next time you plan to tickle the ivories at Nordstrom and I will drop in.


Whenever the piano at Nordstrom's in King of Prussia, PA - a Steinway B - was not being played by the hired professional, it was kept locked. My thought was that Nordstrom's wanted no one of the general public to touch that piano. It might even have been a union issue.

Regards,
_________________________
BruceD
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Estonia 190

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#1662278 - 04/18/11 11:10 AM Re: Jobs As a Pianist? Curious [Re: Arghhh]
Dave Hahn Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 04/18/11
Posts: 1
Loc: New York, NY
Originally Posted By: Arghhh
Just came across this article from musician wages:
jobs


Thanks Arghhh for the link. We also have this article at MW:

How to Get a Job as a Pianist

That's probably even better for the topic.
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