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“For More Pianos, Last Note Is Thud in the Dump”

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For More Pianos, Last Note Is Thud in the Dump @ NYTimes.com.

…from 1900 to 1930, the golden age of piano making, American factories churned out millions of them. Nearly 365,000 were sold at the peak, in 1910, according to the National Piano Manufacturers Association. (In 2011, 41,000 were sold, along with 120,000 digital pianos and 1.1 million keyboards, according to Music Trades magazine.)

The average life span rarely exceeds 80 years, piano technicians say. That’s a lot of pianos now reaching the end of the line.

Piano dealers also blame other changes in society for a lack of demand in the used-piano market: cuts in music education in schools, competition for practice time from other pursuits, a drop in spending on home furnishings with the fall of the housing market.

Whatever the reason, people in the piano world agree that disposals are mounting.

O’Mara Meehan Piano Movers said it takes 5 to 10 pianos a month to the debris transfer site here. The company was founded in 1874 by the great-grandfather of the brothers Bryan and Charles T. O’Mara Jr.


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1 Comment

  1. OK, is it just me, or does this mark a golden opportunity for creative mechatronic hackers to build a bodacious Player-Piano like device on the cheap?

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