Consider the Piano Room
The Keys to Making Your Music Room Sing
A beautiful piece of music combines many ideas into one cohesive expression. When creating the ideal space to house your piano, the same principle can be followed. By establishing a total plan that brings together the features of the room, the qualities of the instrument, and how the piano will be used, everything will live in harmony. Consider learning how to find the right piano for your space.
Since the piano will be the focal point--for both the ears and the eyes--of your space, take its specifications into consideration. Whether you already possess your ideal instrument or you’re in the market, each type of piano has a unique history and qualities.
If you have selected a smaller space as the piano room, the upright design might be right for you. The upright piano started gaining popularity in the United States at the end of the 19th century. The growing production throughout the 20th century represented the smaller size of American homes. The upright style saves space without sacrificing sound by stringing the instrument vertically instead of horizontally. The Steinway 1098 is an excellent option. It is designed with extra space between the strings to produce richer tones. Vintage Steinways are also a great choice; the 1927 Steinway V is known for its unique and expressive sound.
Baby Grands and Grands
If you are selecting a larger room to devote to your piano, then look to the grand or baby grand. The striking and classic appearance of the grand design will elevate the look of any space. The baby grand represents a smaller version of the traditional grand piano design. Typically speaking the longer the piano, the longer the strings, the less inharmonicity--or harshness in tone--will occur. When the strings are longer, the differences in length between octaves is larger which translates to a more balanced sound. This is why the grand and the baby grand are known for producing the best sound quality and are most often used in concert halls.
For your home, the Bluthner Model 10 is a wonderful option. It is a baby grand model known for its great sound quality, because of its clear and resounding bass tones. The proportions were designed to create a complete sound from the bottom notes up. It can fill a large room with full sound.
Perhaps you’re not so much a piano player as much as a lover of the piano. The player piano--or self-playing piano--might offer the right solution for your home. It can add a little fun and whimsy to any space, whether it's a space devoted to the piano or a game or media room. From 1900 to 1930 more player pianos were manufactured than any other type of piano in production. These were common household objects that offered families entertainment before radio or television became the norm. Today, most player pianos purchased are vintage models, many of which are highly regarded amongst collectors. Finding the right one for you can be a long, but rewarding process.
If you are looking for a more modern version, meet the Yahama Disklavier. With this new version of a player piano, you can experience acoustic performances from the best players in the world right in your home. You can select from a catalogue of pieces, and the acoustic instrument will mimic the exact expression and tone that came from the original performance. The Disklavier can connect to your home’s audio system, which means any room can be a piano room.
Whether you’re selecting a piano to fit a specific room or molding a space to a particular piano, the room you choose creates opportunity--and challenges. One aspect to consider is whether you’re creating a dedicated piano room, or if you’re bringing a piano into a room with multiple functions. If you are a serious player who is deeply concerned with sound quality, a dedicated room may work better for you. A home technology professional can create the ideal acoustic scenario for your piano, so that you can have the concert hall experience right at home. A dedicated room may also work best for learners, as the proper acoustics would help develop your ear and the private space would be ideal for practicing.
If you’re bringing your piano into another room of your home, the acoustics for the piano may not be that space’s first priority. However, there are other advantages. For one, you can use the piano as a design element as well as an instrument. The beauty of the piano can add a classic feel to any space. Another benefit of placing your piano in a room with multiple purposes is that it can fill your home with music, and be used for entertaining. Ultimately, you must consider what you want the piano to bring to your home to make these decision.
How you place and design the space for your piano will depend upon the type of piano, the space you choose, and how you want to use the instrument. As you are making these considerations, know that you are not alone. Contact a local BRAVAS partner, to help you through the process and develop an ideal acoustic plan.