Keynote

It is humbling that this machine — over 200 strings, more than 12,000 parts, and millions of players — has but one caretaker. The technician is responsible for a daunting array of tasks to keep the instrument in top form. As such a practice is a lifelong, top-to-bottom art, it must be said that piano technicians truly love what they do.

For these individuals, work means knowing how important a piano is in the space it inhabits. A piano often represents singular value to its owners: A family heirloom with a legacy; a substantial investment for a studio or school; the harmonic pulse in an ensemble. Many people could be playing it privately or publicly day to day, so it fulfills both an individual and a communal purpose.

For the pianist, their instrument must be well looked after in its home, whether that be a school, studio, parlour, concert venue, or simply the living room. Though it may not travel anywhere, it is an organic machine with inner workings that undergo change with humidity swings, usage, and age. Immediately evident by its distinct sound, it begs to be cared for. Such respect leads to a deep rapport between technician and instrument and, by extension, technician and owner.

For a piano technician, it is an honour and a privilege to play this instrumental role.