May 31, 2024

About the Author: Arwen

Arwen is a keen piano enthusiast and loves the instrument. She is also a student of marketing and loves creative work!

The piano is often overlooked when it comes to interesting facts and new information. Nevertheless, here are 5 facts worth the read.

Illustration of astronaut playing piano

1. Pianos Have Been Sent to Space Before

If I was sent to space, I’d definitely take an instrument with me to pass the time if I could. Ed Lu seized the opportunity to take an electric piano to space with him and play it.

Lu graduated with an electrical engineering degree and was later chosen to partake in NASA’s astronaut program.

Three years later he was sent into space. On his third time going to space, Lu used the opportunity to play the piano in space. He played the “Happy Birthday” song which he said was challenging.

Many other astronauts who have also played the piano in space, can understand the difficulty of playing piano in space. The reason for this is because pushing the keys down in a gravity free environment causes the instrument to float away, if not anchored.

The keys also would not jump back into their original position. Yet it still sounds like a fun activity to tick off your bucket list.


2. There Are More Than Three Types of Pianos

Almost everyone is familiar with the upright, the grand and the electric piano which include electronic or digital. But did our know there are different categories that fall under these resulting in more types of pianos?

The smallest of the piano types, is a Spinet.

It is a form of the harpsichord, usually wing shaped, yet also commonly found shaped as a typical upright piano.

It was quite the popular choice for people living in small spaces who still wanted to pursue their love for playing piano. More types that look like upright pianos are the console, studio and full size piano – the length ascending in this order.

Grand pianos are seen as more of a luxury, yet can be more affordable when looking at the smallest type which is the Petite Grand piano.

The Baby Grand, Medium Grand, Ballroom Grand and Concert grand all form part as types of grand pianos. The concert grand piano is one I dream of having – such a majestic and ethereal looking instrument!

Digital pianos come in various shapes and sizes, due to the freedom of being able to choose where the electronic parts go without ruining quality. The Rhodes is considered as the king of electric pianos, which is small enough to be transported by suitcase!

Left hand playing piano

3. There Are Specially Made Left-Handed Pianos

In earlier times, many considered it unlucky or even cursed to be left-handed, most probably having an impact on how pianos were made.

Obviously, as time carried on, the superstition died as people realised the truth of their accusations. Studies show that about 10% of the population are left handed, thus the market for left handed pianos would probably not thrive.

Yet, A left handed pianist – Christopher Seed, deemed it fit to create a piano where everything is reversed. Christopher said his left hand was more dominant and dexterous.

This led to the first ever left-handed piano – a complete mirror-image of a typical 19th century fortepiano. The high notes begin on the left side, while the lower notes move down in pitch towards the right.

Even the pedals are reversed!

Christopher has turned his ‘obstacle’ into an advantage for sure, paving a way for many left handed pianists who are the same.

Although this invention is practical and genius, I guess it would be better to use a normal piano since left handed pianos are not as common or popular.

Grand piano

4. Largest Piano Ever Built

The history behind it is quite interesting.

In 1934, a leading British piano manufacturer wanted to celebrate the 25 years of king George V being on the throne. They accepted the challenge and built a massive piano. It weighed 1270 kg and was 3.55m long! Yet this was only the start of piano giants.

A few more were built, but all of these have met their match when one particular piano was built.

Stolëmowi Klawér is currently recognised as the world’s largest piano. With a measurement of 6.07m long and almost 2 metres tall, this piano was created in Poland 2010 to celebrate Frédéric Chopin’s 200 year anniversary.

A normal piano usually has 88 keys, whereas this incredible beast of an instrument has a whopping 156 of them! The Stolëmowi Klawér is located in Szymbark where it lives at the Education Centre.

White color grand piano

5. The World’s Most Expensive Piano

If you had an infinite amount of money and a love for playing the piano, would you spend millions for a breathtaking piece of art?

Not too long ago, a piano was on auction during the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games opening ceremony. It was sold for a large sum of money, amounting to $3.22 million!

It was called the Crystal piano, which – true to its name – was made entirely out of pure crystal. The crystal clear body puts the inner parts of the piano on show, revealing the intricate and beautiful design that creates heavenly sounds.

There are a bunch more pianos sold in this price range, like the John Lennon Steinway model z (sold for 2.37) , the Sound of Harmony ( 1.62m) and many more.

Yet the all time most expensive piano ever recorded, was the Casablanca piano, Also known as the “As time goes by” piano.

Created in around 1927, This beauty was sold to an anonymous buyer for $3.5 million in 2014!


What fact made your eyes widen, or did you know all of these?

Hopefully it opened a whole new world of your knowledge of the piano. There truly are fascinating facts to discover about the piano, you just need to look!


(No date) NASA Ed Lu. (Accessed: 30 May 2024) Largest piano (no date) Guinness World Records. (Accessed: 30 May 2024)Piano (2024) Encyclopædia Britannica. (Accessed: 30 May 2024)Spinet (no date) Encyclopædia Britannica. (Accessed: 30 May 2024)Statistics about the most expensive pianos • Gitnux (2024) GITNUX. (Accessed: 30 May 2024)Valley Piano Tuning and Repair (no date) Five of the world’s most expensive pianos, Valley Piano Tuning and Repair. (Accessed: 30 May 2024)What is the most expensive piano in the world? (no date) Classical Music. (Accessed: 30 May 2024)

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