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#262999 - 02/26/07 05:13 PM The Twilight of American Piano Culture -- ?
Glyptodont Offline
Full Member

Registered: 05/19/05
Posts: 377
Loc: Wisconsin
Our piano tuner recently came to do his thing on our mid-sized grand.

He is an older guy who has been an independent tuner for many years, and he does contract work for the largest local piano retailer.

He suggested that this establishment may be quietly going out of business. I myself recently visited their showroom -- they only have three grands on display in a showroom that held more like 15 of them some years ago. Our tuner stated that they are selling out their inventory and are NOT ordering any pianos shipped to replace what they sell. His "confidential" tip to me -- their days are numbered.

He told me that quite a few independent piano retailers have quietly gone out of business here in the Midwest. Increasingly, viable piano showrooms are limited to the three or four largest cities in our state.

There also seems to be an increasing popularity of very small grands in the 4'8" to 5'1" category. One wag called these "playable coffee tables." This suggests that people continue to appreciate the prestige and status of a grand, but it is becoming increasingly a "decorator."

The impact of improved and affordable digital pianos on all this is beyond my ability to assess.

I'm old enough to remember the years before television. Pianos were a source of entertainment and they could enliven social gatherings in homes. The tube took a while, but has pretty much torpedoed this sort of genteel culture.

Many of you know MUCH more about the big picture on piano culture in America than I do.

Do you think we are seeing a kind of "fading away" here?

Colleges and universities will always supply a market for mid-sized to large grands, so the retail market will never disappear. But I wonder if the acoustic piano is increasingly fading as a fixture of American middle-class lifestyle.

I will read any posts with great interest-- thanks.
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#263000 - 02/26/07 05:30 PM Re: The Twilight of American Piano Culture -- ?
Norbert Online   content
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/03/01
Posts: 14120
Loc: Surrey, B.C.
 Quote:
There also seems to be an increasing popularity of very small grands in the 4'8" to 5'1" category. One wag called these "playable coffee tables." This suggests that people continue to appreciate the prestige and status of a grand, but it is becoming increasingly a "decorator."
Very true. \:o

In fact, many businesses today cater exactly to this mentality trying to make the most while life is good and the show goes on....

On the other hand, there is an emerging new, if somewhat smaller, but very serious group of new piano buyers out there as well.

The one that have discovered music as an integral part of their own and their family's life.

Norbert
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#263001 - 02/26/07 05:54 PM Re: The Twilight of American Piano Culture -- ?
ftp Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/10/05
Posts: 2365
Loc: Philadelphia
Glyptodont/Norbert:

The stats in my head are that in the 1920's 300K pianos sold in the US and last year 100K pianos sold in the US. I don't know how much the population has increased but it is clear that the piano has moved from being a staple in the living room to an option. I am assuming that the drop out rate has always been fairly high in terms of years of lesson taking, yet my question is are the group that buy today more likely to stick with it or not. I wonder if there has always been alot of fallout in the initial stages but not a lot of fallout of those who play for more than 5 years and beyond. Does the question make sense?

Another point is that there has been a seismic shift in purchasing patterns from vast majority upright to near equal split between uprights and grands. This could account for the increasing popularity of 4'8 to 5'1".

As families have more entertainment options to choose from piano playing has become a casualty. Guitars seem to be selling well though. Not sure what the answer is, maybe we just need to see "50-cent" on a few MTV videos playing the piano and all will be well again.

Can you add an acoustic piano to RAP music? More seriously look at the ballroom dance and ballet movies coming out targeted to our youth. Time for a moving piano story filled with underprivleged kids, romance, competition and a come from behind victory. Who are the Hollywood pianists that we can pull on their heartstrings-any ADD or depressed or delinquent kids saved by the piano. Thus I digress...

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#263002 - 02/26/07 06:02 PM Re: The Twilight of American Piano Culture -- ?
Bill_G Offline
Full Member

Registered: 05/19/06
Posts: 28
Loc: Iowa
Glyptodont,

I think there is hope for the future of the acoustic piano, if from nowhere else than this wonderful pianoworld website. It was reading piano-enthusiastic posts from here that pushed me to buy my CW 1520.

Oh how I wished I had purchased an acoustic piano when my children were younger. Both my daughters were/are musically talented. I started with the piano late in life and am really enjoying it now, but I missed out on an incredible family experience of having a piano in a home with children. However, Daddy knows better now, and if I have grandchildren, the grandkids WILL grow up with a piano in their home, even if I have to pony-up the cash for another Charles Walter or two.

We can't always change the "Big World", but we can change our "little worlds".

Bill

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#263003 - 02/26/07 06:11 PM Re: The Twilight of American Piano Culture -- ?
Ken Knapp Offline



Registered: 04/18/06
Posts: 2207
Loc: Pennsylvania
You ever see those medicine commercials on tv? They begin by describing a symptom, and then they proclaim that their medication is THE cure. I'll bet there a lot of people going to the doctor insisting they need a prescription for THAT medication to cure their ills and asking for it by name.

Marketing certainly works. It's a shame a few of the piano manufacturers don't pick up on that style of advertising. Create a feeling of need in the minds of consumers for their product. Heck, it's been years since I've seen any ads on the tube for pianos, period.

Ken
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#263004 - 02/26/07 10:37 PM Re: The Twilight of American Piano Culture -- ?
Monica K. Offline

Platinum Supporter until Dec 31 2012


Registered: 08/10/05
Posts: 17747
Loc: Lexington, Kentucky
In other threads in the past, the issue of organized sports for children has been raised as one possible factor for the decline in piano purchases. Parents want to enrich their children's lives by including extracurricular activities, but the activity of choice appears increasingly to be organized sports, which (as any parent knows) can easily consume nearly all a family's discretionary time. Couple that with the decline of music education in the schools, and you have a recipe for families just not bothering to make piano (or any instrument) lessons a priority.
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#263005 - 02/26/07 10:59 PM Re: The Twilight of American Piano Culture -- ?
KatieB Offline
Full Member

Registered: 08/08/06
Posts: 51
Loc: North Carolina
In my area, my piano tuner told me that the PT Guild was dying 10 years ago but had "picked up" (his words) new work and new members in the past few years. IDK, but it encouraged me to hear him say it.

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#263006 - 03/12/07 12:19 PM Re: The Twilight of American Piano Culture -- ?
Piano World Offline



Registered: 05/24/01
Posts: 5571
Loc: Parsonsfield, ME (orig. Nahant...
I address this subject in some small way in our press release...
http://www.prweb.com/releases/2007/3/prweb509227.htm

I do agree more should be done to incourage new players. I've approached the NAMM organization a couple of times, offering to work with them utilizing our reach (our traffic), no response.

When I was in the retail end of the business (many years ago), we used to offer piano classes (group lessons using electronic pianos and headphones), and free introductory lessons.
We also provided practice rooms (free).

Of course there were (and still are) organ clubs, where people get together and have fun playing and listening.

I like to think of our Piano Forums Parties as sort of a Piano Club.

I have read that while acoustic piano sales are down, electronic/digital piano sales are up.
And that's ok too, if that is what it takes to get someone interested in playing the piano, it works for me.

I think the biggest challenge getting younger people interested (besides tearing them away from their electronic toys) is somehow making it cool to play.
When I was a teenager everybody wanted to play in a band, and playing piano/keyboards was considered cool (not as cool as guitar, but cool enough).
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#263007 - 03/12/07 12:53 PM Re: The Twilight of American Piano Culture -- ?
J. Mark Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/13/06
Posts: 1323
 Quote:
Originally posted by fathertopianist:
Glyptodont/Norbert:

The stats in my head are that in the 1920's 300K pianos sold in the US and last year 100K pianos sold in the US. [/b]
I've had those general figures tossing around in my head since I read Fine (or something). Demographics and economic trends are a sort of hobby of mine. Clearly, there is something to be learned from these numbers.

I wonder... how accurate are the numbers in the first place, for one thing? Do we really know that 300,000 pianos a year sold in the 1920's?

I also wonder about the secondary market. I mean, in 1920 (or even 1950, to a lesser degree), simply getting a piano from Point A to Point B was a huge job. So once a piano was purchased, it was less likely to ever move (eg, be sold). If unused, it just sat there. But mobility is much greater today, and there are 50 "man with van" listings in any town of any size. Moving a piano is easy, and so I wonder if many of the previous "300,000" are now on the secondary market. ?

Still, it certainly does seem to me that the role of the piano in the lives of Americans has changed dramatically. When I was a kid in NC, pretty much every member of our extended family had a piano in their house. And a large percentage of my family members "played," at least at some rudimentary level. The pianos were always getting a workout. These were practical pianos, just small uprights or spinets or whatever. But no one cared, they were pianos, and they got played.

Everything is different today. The vast majority of families do *not* purchase pianos for their homes. The vast majority of people do not provide musical training for their children. With more parents working, and more time taken up with outside organized activities, school time taking longer, more "competitive" parents pushing their kids academically, and a host of other factors...music seems like a silly luxury that gets you nothing.

Plus, yes, television, but these days even moreso, the Internet. My 4 year old daughter logs on, finds her favorite websites, and plays online games (her favorite being something called Wa Wa Wubsie). That and movies movies movies -- download 'em, rent 'em at the grocery store, get them as gifts, etc. Even my 2 year old knows how to operate the DVD player and the tv (it's sad, really, I blame my wife \:\) ).

I truly believe all of this, and much more, is part of a general decline in the cultural lives on the majority of people. Not only the cultural lives, but also the intellectual and personal development. Sure, there are "offsetting" factors -- my children will be whiz kids on the computer, and no doubt, there will be increasing avenues for creativity there. But music is fundamental. It is part of what we are. And it is becoming increasingly a product to be consumed, and not an activity to be pursued.

I feel like Miniver Cheevy...but then, I always have. ... Maybe I should have a drink... \:\(

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#263008 - 03/12/07 12:55 PM Re: The Twilight of American Piano Culture -- ?
U S A P T Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/20/06
Posts: 1645
Loc: An Indiana University
FATHERTOPIANIST:

Try multiplying your stats by 3 and then you will be much closer to the actual number of pianos sold in the USA alone.
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#263009 - 03/12/07 01:04 PM Re: The Twilight of American Piano Culture -- ?
U S A P T Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/20/06
Posts: 1645
Loc: An Indiana University
What concerns me are these playable coffee tables or "PSO's" as I call them. "Piano Shaped Objects."

From a moving perspective, a cheap baby grand made mostly of MDF is a NIGHTMARE to move and you can only put those legs on so many times before they start to wobble.

An MDF piano is VERY heavy, much heavier than the older solid wood pianos of yesterday.

Sadly, a lot of people fall for these pianos on price.

When I sold I was DAMN good at it. One way I bumped people up to better-quality pianos was to have a cheap PSO on the floor and then a better quality one.

I'd grab the rim of the cheap piano and shake it. It would squeak and make a horrible sound. Then I'd grab the better-quality piano and it would do NOTHING. Like it was bolted to the floor.

I spent the rest of the time talking about empowerment and fun and family time and goals and dreams.

I hated talking about backposts and pinblocks.

Somewhere in the process they'd sit down and buy the quiet piano.
_________________________
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Former Piano Industry Professional
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Roland Atelier AT90R
************
All Posts are Snarky Unless Otherwise Noted
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#263010 - 03/12/07 02:37 PM Re: The Twilight of American Piano Culture -- ?
Reaper978 Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/08/05
Posts: 1325
I will always play, regardless of anyone else does or not. If you want a piano-shaped coffee table, be my guest, but don't complain to me when I sit down and play it and make it breathe. It's a dying art, for sure, especially in this petty culture with its need for instant gratification. People have no good values anymore.

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#263011 - 03/12/07 04:11 PM Re: The Twilight of American Piano Culture -- ?
FogVilleLad Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/02/05
Posts: 4680
Loc: San Francisco
If owning and playing an acoustic is the criterion, then we're in trouble. If playing and arranging/composing is the criterion, then thanks to digitals we're in good shape.

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#263012 - 03/12/07 04:17 PM Re: The Twilight of American Piano Culture -- ?
FogVilleLad Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/02/05
Posts: 4680
Loc: San Francisco
USAPianoTrucker posted
 Quote:
a cheap baby grand made mostly of MDF is a NIGHTMARE to move and you can only put those legs on so many times before they start to wobble. Sadly, a lot of people fall for these pianos on price.
I don't disagree, but sometimes that's all people can afford. Those PSO's will let them get started.

On the other hand, there is no harm at all in learning if they are willing/able to make a greater commitment. And rim and case materials are a good place to make a comparison. Sustain/projection A/B's might also have worked, tho those lack the dramatic value of a good shake;-)

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#263013 - 03/12/07 04:49 PM Re: The Twilight of American Piano Culture -- ?
Jolly Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/20/01
Posts: 14048
Loc: Louisiana
Larry and lb both predicted a blood bath in the retail piano industry a couple of years ago.

The ROI is simply not there.
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#263014 - 03/12/07 09:05 PM Re: The Twilight of American Piano Culture -- ?
gaffster Offline
Full Member

Registered: 10/18/06
Posts: 244
Loc: east central florida
..the way of the harpsichord perhaps???
Looking at the extreme long view here...
Instruments do come and go with musical tastes and styles. eventually they become merely oddities used to re-live old times. I wonder what place a piano will be - say by March 12,2307..
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#263015 - 03/12/07 10:20 PM Re: The Twilight of American Piano Culture -- ?
Shoshana1224 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 02/20/07
Posts: 35
Loc: Michigan
Everyone still loves music. In 1920, if you wanted to hear a piece, or have a sing a long, someone had to sit down and play the piano. Now it's easy to download whatever you want instantly, or turn on the karaoke machine.

So there is participation, the instant ability to get music, and the pleasure of participation. And no practicing.

IMHO, supporting school music programs is the answer. In my school district, like others, funding is limited. The parents raise money to help fund the programs, scholarships, lessons for some kids who can't afford them, etc.


Shoshana

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#263016 - 03/12/07 10:32 PM Re: The Twilight of American Piano Culture -- ?
Reaper978 Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/08/05
Posts: 1325
But sports are far more important than the arts :rolleyes:

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#263017 - 03/12/07 11:08 PM Re: The Twilight of American Piano Culture -- ?
M&HAAdriver Offline
Silver Expires April 2010

Silver member until April 2010

Registered: 01/21/05
Posts: 272
Loc: Centennial, Colorado
Let's hear it for the aging baby-boomers whose lowly Yamaha P22 followed along on three corporate moves, but nevertheless sat relatively unused for several years while the kids were in sports, and even (thankfully) lots of school choirs. Such a person wakes up one day and realizes the guy who bought the old piano still lives, and will want to play an even nicer piano in the years between now and the nursing home.

I saw such a person again today in a reflection from my grand's music desk. I am not alone.
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#263018 - 03/13/07 02:10 AM Re: The Twilight of American Piano Culture -- ?
turandot Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/27/07
Posts: 7147
Loc: torrance, CA
from Monica Kern
 Quote:
In other threads in the past, the issue of organized sports for children has been raised as one possible factor for the decline in piano purchases. Parents want to enrich their children's lives by including extracurricular activities, but the activity of choice appears increasingly to be organized sports, which (as any parent knows) can easily consume nearly all a family's discretionary time. Couple that with the decline of music education in the schools, and you have a recipe for families just not bothering to make piano (or any instrument) lessons a priority.
I think all of this is true. But school bands for middle schoolers and high schoolers seem to be flourishing in Southern California where I live. In fact, a lot of kids somehow manage to be in school athletics and school bands simultaneuously. A study I read cited statistics on the academic achievement of students involved in band as being higher than the general student population.

I think one of the problems with traditional piano lessons steeped in the classical piano repertoire is that kids don't relate to the music, and the piano as an instrument doesn't give kids much opportunity to relate to each other. Bands teach kids to know their role. Like sports there is a realization that the whole is greater than the sum of the parts, that you have to depend on team members and be a complementary part of something that can be pretty exciting.

I grew up with piano lessons. Interaction with other kids musically was limited to seeing them arrive as I was leaving after a lesson, seeing them leave as I was arriving, or being part of recitals. I'm afraid it's the same today. That's why so many professional and amateur pianists are prima donnas who do not integrate easily into ensemble work. Often kids who do play and play exceptionally well are quiet loners. That was certainly true in my case. (the loner part / not the exceptionally well part). I didn't really come out of my shell until an electric keyboard got me into a garage band. My own kids studied piano a short while. When they wanted to change to band instruments I encouraged them. Piano taught them the fundamentals. Bands and ensembles gave them the chance to have fun.

You meet so many ADULTS who say "I took lessons for two years as a kid. I wish NOW I hadn't quit." Maybe the solitary pursuit of musical fulfillment at the keyboard is a better fit for adults and not such a great one for most kids.
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#263019 - 03/13/07 06:55 AM Re: The Twilight of American Piano Culture -- ?
Piano World Offline



Registered: 05/24/01
Posts: 5571
Loc: Parsonsfield, ME (orig. Nahant...
Good points made by all.

turandot, I understand what you're saying about piano being more of a "solo" instrument. But it doesn't have to be.
Like you, I grew up with music in our house. My father and sister both played piano, and a local rock group sometimes practiced in our living room.

I first learned piano because I wanted to play in a rock band. Practice was at my house (the other parents didn't want to suffer through it).

So I had plenty of interaction with my bandmates, and actually did go on to play out professionaly.

Although a lot of folks on the forums probably play their pianos as a solo instrument at home, it doesn't have to be.

There is no reason (other than shyness) not to invite friends who play other instruments over to play along with you.

And as I point out in our Press Release , piano forums parties are a great way to share your love of music and of playing the piano.

I agree school bands are a great way to introduce kids to music, but the weak link here is usually the parents. They need to encourage their kids to play, and support their practice, lessons, instrument rentals, etc.

The NAMM organization promotes a program called Wanna Play?

It's focus is spreading the word about the fun, educational, and even health benefits of making music.

Check out the Wanna Play? section of their web site, pretty interesting (and lots of resources).

As a member (or guest) of these piano forums, you have already demonstrated that you have an interest in making music.
Share that interest with somebody, encourage them to take up an instrument (any instrument), tell them how much fun it is to play, and that getting started isn't as difficult as they might think.

The AOPA (Airplane Owners & Pilots Association) has a program called "Project Pilot". The idea is that anybody with a pilots certificate is a potential ambassador for recruiting new pilots.

They do this by offering to take people up for a flight, to show them how much fun it is, and that while there is certainly a learning curve, it's worth it.

Take someone for a test flight of your piano today!
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-------------------------
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And please invite everyone you know to join our piano forums!
Coming to Maine? We're in Parsonsfield (southwest) let's get together!


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#263020 - 03/13/07 07:29 AM Re: The Twilight of American Piano Culture -- ?
mjs Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/10/07
Posts: 365
Loc: München, Germany
My 2 cents:

OK - all of this relates to growing up in Germany, but then I think it still applies.

The piano teacher I had until about 10 years ago was very eager that her better students (she didn't take on that many in total) would play piano 4-hands - in my opinion an invaluable experience. You have interaction with other people and you have a vast repertoire at your fingertips. Almost all of the literature written for orchestra up to the 1920's as at some stage ben transcribed for piano duett. We played things ranging from "Rhapsody in Blue" over "Till Eulenspiegel" to "Sheherazade". Obviously, this is more work for everyone involved, but also the beginners seemed to enjoy playing their little duets of even trios (piano 6-hands ...). So piano playing and learning does not HAVE to be a lonely excercise.

Interestingly, when our house was still being built, we got talking to our future (and now present) neighbour while insepcting the site. We soon realised that we both played the piano, and shortly after we had moved in, she arrived with some music and the thought that we should make music together -- we haven't had time to pursue it yet, but it will be great fun.

Another thing I'd like to do is find people to do some chamber music - as much as I love playing the piano myself, I enjoy playing in a group as well.

Markus
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#263021 - 03/13/07 09:54 AM Re: The Twilight of American Piano Culture -- ?
Shoshana1224 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 02/20/07
Posts: 35
Loc: Michigan
This issue of the lonely piano player really resonates. In my own life, I found myself in my teenage years doing much more singing than piano playing because of the social aspect, and the opportunity to make music in a group.

In high school I had the chance to play piano in the jazz band, but years of classical playing did not prepare me well for quick jazz improvisation. It was a struggle. The other kids had been playing together in the school band since elementary school.

I like the idea of building a social aspect and rock/jazz into piano lessons. This kind of teaching could certainly make piano more attractive for kids.

My own kids have been playing in the school band and orchestra since elementary school. (They are now in 8th grade.) And they participate in soccer and basketball. We try to maintain a balance--music is important, but if you sit for hours and practice, sports are important for your physical health.

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#263022 - 03/13/07 10:26 AM Re: The Twilight of American Piano Culture -- ?
thunder Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/24/07
Posts: 59
Loc: Northern California
The need to be social is very strong in many kids/teenagers. In order to keep the piano interesting and relevant for them, I agree that you have to go beyond the traditional model of the solo pianist.
We are lucky to have a teacher that understands this. Recently he made the effort to connect our child with another child who needed a piano accompanist for her flute recital. The girls got along famously, share a similar work ethic, and now are busy working towards the next event. It has been a great opportunity for my daughter to develop the ability to listen to the other player, and to take a background role when necessary.
When my daughter was younger, she attended Suzuki institutes, which are one-week summer camps in which children who all play the same repertoire come together and take master classes, attend group classes with games, and hang out with other kids who play the same instrument. People have very strong opinions one way or the other about the Suzuki method, but encouraging group playing and making games out of practice makes it very fun for younger kids especially.

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#263023 - 03/13/07 10:42 AM Re: The Twilight of American Piano Culture -- ?
lilylady Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/17/05
Posts: 4977
Loc: boston north
Thunder,

Sounds great that the kids could get together.

I was a lonely child pianist for several years until I discovered a few friends as a sophmore who were at my level of playing and we shared pieces with each other.

Although, I must say, I did like the solitude of playing for myself. I could get lost in the music all alone and it became my companion.

LL
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#263024 - 03/13/07 10:51 AM Re: The Twilight of American Piano Culture -- ?
Piano World Offline



Registered: 05/24/01
Posts: 5571
Loc: Parsonsfield, ME (orig. Nahant...
This NAMM sponsored web site ... http://www.themusicedge.com/ is one of their attempts to get more kids interested in playing music, and playing together.

Check out the Wanna Play? web site for other ideas.
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#263025 - 03/13/07 11:49 AM Re: The Twilight of American Piano Culture -- ?
Kingfrog777 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/04/07
Posts: 243
The dealer I work for was a Piano /Organ only dealer for many years.

He had the vision to see the decline in sales of both and expanded successfully to a full line MI and sheet music dealer. We have hundreds of guitars on the walls,drums, 12 baby grands on the floor, (10 under 5"3). 1 grand over 6' (still crated for the past year.) 6 new uprights and all the digital Keybords from Yamaha and a few Kurtzweil.

He found the $5000-$10,000 grand piano market to be the bread and butter in new piano sales. Uprights dead, Used uprights very much dead as digitals are much better choices for $1500-3000.

It has served him well as stores all around are closing their doors who clung to piano only rooms, I sense he felt in a few cases their egos would not allow them to submit to market forces and become full line MI dealers. They carried more expensive brands hoping fewer sales would bring larger profit.

Rather then make "value" judgments and try to "educate" the public why not just give them what THEY want? It works much better and takes a lot less effort and frustration.
_________________________
Piano, pro audio,guitar and MI sales.
Yamaha, Pearl River, Bergmann, Remington.

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#263026 - 03/13/07 12:02 PM Re: The Twilight of American Piano Culture -- ?
J. Mark Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/13/06
Posts: 1323
Will someone please explain to me what "MI" is?

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#263027 - 03/13/07 12:45 PM Re: The Twilight of American Piano Culture -- ?
FogVilleLad Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/02/05
Posts: 4680
Loc: San Francisco
turnadot posted
 Quote:
I think one of the problems with traditional piano lessons steeped in the classical piano repertoire is that kids don't relate to the music, and the piano as an instrument doesn't give kids much opportunity to relate to each other. Bands teach kids to know their role. Like sports there is a realization that the whole is greater than the sum of the parts,
Great points made in your post. Glad others are picking up on them.

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#263028 - 03/13/07 12:47 PM Re: The Twilight of American Piano Culture -- ?
M&HAAdriver Offline
Silver Expires April 2010

Silver member until April 2010

Registered: 01/21/05
Posts: 272
Loc: Centennial, Colorado
Hey I work for an airline in engineering. We have so many acronyms that they start repeating. YIKES!

That said, I believe MI is "Musical Instrument" in this case.

But what's MDF (A few posts up the line)? Obviously a material used in certain types of pianos. But what?
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