Pianos have been around for a long time, though it is still considered to be a young instrument. While some instruments, like the harp, have been around since the Greek Empire, the piano is only about 300 years old. In that time it has become a staple of orchestras. Although everybody has heard and enjoyed listening to a piano in NH, not many people know a lot about them. Here are the top ten fun facts about pianos.
1. Piano is just a nickname.
The full name of the instrument is pianoforte. The word is Italian and blends together two words representing sound. ‘Piano’ was for the quiet notes and ‘forte’ was for the loud notes.
2. The phrase “tickle the ‘ole ivories” to describe playing the piano is outdated.
While piano keys used to be made out of ivory, that practice stopped in the 1940s. Modern-day piano keys are made out of plastic.
3. The sound a piano makes comes from small hammers within strumming on the strings.
Because of this action, the piano is considered a percussion instrument instead of a strings instrument.
4. There is a difference in speed between an upright and a grand piano.
Upright pianos play a little bit slower than grand pianos. The difference is slight and very difficult to identify, but grand pianos allow the pianists to play at faster speeds.
5. The first piano was called a harpsichord.
Bartolomeo di Francesco Cristofori invented the instrument in Italy back in 1709.
6. Back in the day, the first pianos made were so expensive even members of the upper class couldn’t afford to purchase one.
Nowadays, pianos can still be pricey. Make sure to buy from the right place when purchasing a piano in NH.
7. For those who purchase a brand new piano, you should tune it at least four times in the first year.
After that, you’re all set to go down to only two tunings per year. Unless of course, you have an electronic piano. These don’t need to be tuned.
8. Of all the instruments, the piano has the widest range of tones.
A piano can play lower than a 16-foot pedal note of an organ, but also play higher than a piccolo’s highest note. This earned it the nickname “King of All Instruments.”
9. Although the search for an electronic piano began in the 1920’s, it wasn’t fully realized until the 1980’s.
That was when the first digital piano went for sale on the market.
10. The piano is a very popular instrument.
In the United States, there are approximately 18 million non-professional pianists. Many schools of music will also require a year of piano lessons from any performer for enrollment.