Piano Forever: An Enduring Love Affair

There is a wealth of historical evidence that tells us that music has been part of our lives since primitive times. Music is generally a feature at every significant life event: births, marriages and deaths, there is a song for every occasion and a piece of music to accompany every moment in between. Music helps us to socialise, to be alone, to remember and to forget: at every turn music provides us with the soundtrack to our lives.

The piano of course is the sonic chameleon of musical instruments. The ’pianoforte’ was invented over three hundred years ago by Italian Harpsichord maker Bartolomeo di Francesco Cristofori and since then the piano has evolved from these origins to become a precision engineered tuned percussion instrument that has shaped musical history. From Medieval, Renaissance, Baroque and Romantic and Classical periods in music to Jazz and the most modern of contemporary clubland Dance music, the one soundscape that is a constant feature of is that of the piano.

Ever the provocateur, in 1931 Poul Henningsen’s Bauhaus inspired design sensibilities lead him to undress the ‘traditional’ piano. PH saw no reason to conceal the beating heart of this musical instrument inside a wooden box, choosing instead to reveal the very core of the instrument to the world – where he had to cover it, he used the most minimal of transparent casing. The result was a piano that appeared lighter, less obtrusive and with more organic fluid lines than ever before. Today, the PH Grand Piano is produced to the same design specifications, hand built by Blüthner in Leipzig to ensure this musical instrument has the subtleties of tone and action synonymous with the finest modern pianos in the world today. 

The PH Grand Piano is not just for performance environments and concert halls. The smaller PH150 is built to the same specifications as the original PH Grand Piano and is sized for domestic settings. For those of us who stumbled beyond the basics of piano playing yet wish to enjoy the beauty of the instrument everyday then there is a solution that combines both time-honoured tradition with the best of modernity: a self-player and MIDI recording system fit for the 21st Century. With the QRS PNOMation and PNO Scan technology that can be supplied with the PH Grand Piano you will be able to track you progress as a pianist by recording your own piano playing using music industry standard notation software. When you do not feel like playing piano yourself, the wide variety of music available in the self-playing library can be controlled by any wi-fi enabled phone or tablet and is designed to be easily updated as technology evolves, to ensure that it really is future-proof.

In an age where there is an increasing trend towards the automation and computerisation of many aspects of daily life, there are some things however that will remain irreplaceably ‘human’. The desire to beat time on a percussion instrument, to find beauty in simple melodies and more intricate harmonies have become fundamental parts of who we are as people. Of course, as one of the most sophisticated tuned percussion instruments to be invented, the future of the piano is assured. Musical fashions may come and go, but the human love affair with the mechanical instrument that is the piano will likely continue forever: however much technology allows us to automate systems and processes in order to enhance our lives – as humans – we will always be wild at heart. Evolved from design and designed to evolve – the PH Piano really is forever.