Piano, Organ, and Keyboard/piano

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Question
Hi I am a grade 8 student who is working on a project called genius hour, basically what you have to do is learn something you have never tried before and I have taken upon myself to learn a song in piano. One of the aspects of this project is to contact an expert and ask them some questions. So here if you had the time to could you answer these five questions;

What do you recommend I do to maintain my piano?

What is your favourite type of piano to play on and why?

Is the piano I string instrument or a percussion instrument?

Why does the piano have 88 keys but about 250 Strings?

Is a new piano always better than a used piano?


Again thank you so much for your time and I am looking forward to see what you say.

Sincerely,
Marie

Answer
Marie, I'll be glad to answer your questions.  Thanks for asking.  (1) You best maintain a piano by playing it, keeping it tuned, and keeping it clean.  You probably should get a piano tuned every few years.  That is done by a piano technician.  If a piano isn't played, it can lose its tune.  My grandmother's piano strings turned green.  (2) I play a spinet piano.  They are smaller, with a somewhat raised back.  I took lessons on a baby grand, which is much larger.  I like a smaller piano, and they don't take up the room of a baby grand (or grand, which is really big).  (3)  The piano is a percussion instrument.  When you play a key, it causes a hammer inside the piano to hit a string.  In contrast, with a harpsichord, when you hit a note, there is an inner mechanism that plucks the string. (4) Actually, I think a piano has 86 keys.  Why, I'm not sure, but most music you play only covers about two or three octaves.  An octave is a series of eight notes.  They are played in ascending or descending registers.  Many electric keyboards do not have 86 keys.  (5) A used piano can be very good, depending upon its age and condition.  They can also be more affordable.  A used piano isn't very good if it has broken keys and won't hold a tune.  One of my favorite pianos is made by the Kawai Company.  They have a very crisp, clear sound, and they play well.  We bought my piano new and, though it is an antique now, it plays well and has worked well over the years.
Joel

Piano, Organ, and Keyboard

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Joel Bjorling

Expertise

I can answer general questions about playing the piano, playing technique, and piano literature.

Experience

I have played piano for over forty years. I have taught private piano. I have also played in church. I am especially interested in the piano as a music ministry. I have also written several compositions for piano.

Organizations
I'm a past member of the National Guild of Piano Teachers.

Publications
Making Music Magazine Newsletter of the Illinois Country Music Association

Education/Credentials
BA, Behavioral Science, Oral Roberts University (1975) MA, McCormick Theological Seminary (1980) I have had courses in Music Appreciation, Music Theory, and in Hymnology

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