The piano is a musical instrument played by way of a keyboard. The typical acoustic piano has a protective wooden case surrounding the soundboard and metal strings. Strings are sounded when the keys are pressed. There are 88 keys in all (52 white and and 36 black). A greater touch on a key produces a louder sound of the corresponding note. By using pedals, notes can be sustained even when the keys are released.
The piano was created in Padua, Italy in 1709. Harpsichord maker Bartolomeo Cristofori is credited with development of the instrument, which he called a pianoforte—piano meaning “soft” and forte meaning “loud.” Unlike the harpsichord, the piano allowed for variations in volume depending upon a pianist’s touch on the keys.
Many improvements have been made over the past 300 years, yet the modern instrument remains true to Cristofori’s earliest designs. His oldest surviving pianoforte was built in 1720 and is on display at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City.
There has never been a better time to acquire and learn to play the piano. Not every home has the space or budget for a grand or upright model, but there are many other options. Digital pianos and keyboards are extremely popular and affordable.
More Piano Facts
A person who performs on this string instrument is called a pianist.
Notable pianists include Leif Ove Andsnes, Martha Argerich, Claudio Arrau, Vladimir Ashkenazy, Daniel Barenboim, Ludwig van Beethoven, Alfred Brendel, Frédéric Chopin, Glenn Gould, Myra Hess, Vladimir Horowitz, Stephen Hough, Lang Lang, Franz Liszt, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, John Ogdon, Murray Perahia, Maria Joao Pires, Maurizio Pollini, Sergei Rachmaninov, Sviatoslav Richter, Arthur Rubinstein, Clara Schumann, Jean-Yves Thibaudet, and Mitsuko Uchida. Source: Classic FM – The 25 Best Piano Players of All Time
Songwriter, producer, and keyboardist Don Grusin performs Catwalk, from the album “The Hang.” Also performing are Alex Acuña (drums), Charlie Bisharat (violin), Abraham LaBoriel (bass), and Sadao Watanabe (alto saxophone).
We Love Pianos
Looking for more piano facts? Here are some of our favorite pages about pianos for you to enjoy:
Piano is one of the most popular stringed instruments so there are lots of piano gift ideas. Here I have featured piano gifts women will adore and unique piano gifts men will love. Choose from piano books, T-shirts, cooking aprons, posters, trucker hats, bookends, music boxes, figurines, cotton canvas tote bags, scarves, coffee mugs, refrigerator magnets, postage, business cards, colorful buttons, and more. All of them are cool piano gifts for musicians of all ages.
A really great gift you can give a beginning piano player is a course that teaches learning piano fast. Lots of people want to know how to learn piano fast. How many gifts can promise years and years of happiness that will result from learning a musical instrument. With hundreds of positive reviews, these books top our list of unique piano gifts for players in training.
Faber Piano Adventures for Ages 5 and 6
My First Piano Books by Nancy and Randall Faber are super popular with parents and music teachers. Packed with fun-filled songs, rhythm games, and technique activities, these are the books kids love for developing their keyboard skills.
Whimsical Chala handbags and accessories are made with durable faux leather–also called PU leather. If you’re looking for unique piano gifts that are functional as well as stylish, these handbags and accessories should do the trick. Many reviewers have received compliments on their Chala bags, phone cases, and key fobs. Click on item for measurements and additional details about the product.
There are so many piano themed gifts you might have to take a little time to choose the best one. Do you want unique piano gifts, or do you want cool piano gifts? Decisions, decisions. Are you looking for piano recital gifts for your favorite piano player? Or are you looking for gifts for piano teachers? Either way you will find lots of unique piano gift ideas here.
Charming Colorful Addition to Any Playroom
Here’s one of our top pick unique piano gifts for kids. Budding musicians will enjoy playing notes and sounds. More experienced players can make music from a songbook of nine child-friendly favorites. The color-coded key chart makes it easy to identify notes on the piano and take the first steps toward playing tunes. Solid wood construction makes this piano sturdy enough for hours of play.
Make Memorizing Piano Notes Fun and Easy
New to the piano? You’ll be recital ready in no time thanks to these high-quality piano and keyboard stickers. Beginners of all ages will enjoy practicing the piano, while increasing the memorization skills needed for successful learning. Stickers are reusable for years of enjoyment. Complete instructions walk you through the easy steps of sticker application and removal.
We’ve created more than 2,000 products for string musicians and fans. Some of our best unique piano gifts are shared on this page, along with our top picks from other designers. Click on the banner to view the complete String Kings Music Piano collection.
Comfortable T-shirts are a popular gift choice. With so many style and color options, you’ll have no trouble finding the right choice in sizes for all age groups and body types. Click on any style to see what’s available.
Musicians love tote bags. They always come in handy for carrying sheet music and small accessories. They’re one of our favorite inexpensive music gifts, suitable for musicians and music lovers alike. Click on any design to see more style and color options.
Scarves are comfortable and fashionable layering accessories. Every American Apparel all-purpose and super-soft everyday scarf is made with pre-shrunk 100% jersey cotton with raw, unfinished edges. One size fits all–a generous 93 by 16 inches. Made in the USA.
Mugs are one of our favorite unique piano gifts. Everyone can use a few mugs. Click on any mug to see how the design looks from different angles. Choose from many sizes, styles, and colors to create a personal gift for your favorite pianist.
Classic cotton-poly twill blend aprons are another of our top picks for practical piano gifts. Choose from several style and color options. Spacious front pockets hold plenty of utensils and cooking tools. Aprons are machine washable and proudly made in the U.S.A.
Here’s one of our favorite inexpensive gift ideas for piano teachers and pianists. Refrigerator magnets always come in handy. Standard size square magnets measure 2 by 2 inches, and round magnets are typically available in three sizes. Designs are printed on 100% recycled paper. Scratch and UV-resistant Mylar keeps magnets looking new for years to come.
Postage is one of our favorite unique piano gifts. Everyone needs postage stamps! These piano-themed postage designs are available in many sizes with both horizontal and vertical options. Select from twelve postage denominations ranging from post card rate to Priority Mail. Click on any design to see all of the options available.
High quality printed business cards are available in sets of 100 on your choice of eight types of premium card stock. The printed information can be easily personalized for any pianist or piano teacher. Classic business cards measure 2 by 3.5 inches. Trendy skinny and chubby profile cards are available for some styles. Click on any design to see more options.
Here’s a fun and inexpensive gift idea for musicians and music lovers. Standard size square buttons measure 2 inches by 2 inches. Round buttons are available in several sizes. The designs are printed on 100% recycled paper and covered with scratch and UV-resistant Mylar for many years of enjoyment. Several of these styles allow you to choose a different background color for a customized gift.