5-6 May / 11am-7pm
Bargehouse, Oxo Tower Wharf, Bargehouse Street, SE1 9PH
In partnership with Plymouth University
Steinway & Sons 12-2pm & 3-5pm
See a model B performance piano taken apart to its component parts before being reassembled.
And daily demonstrations of: soundboard repairs, hammer re-shaping, key re-bushing, action repair, damper repair and pedal repairs.
Thursday: Dr Mat Emmett, Peter Davis
Friday: Dr Alexis Kirke
Live performances 6-8pm
Thursday & Friday: Steinway artist Jason Bae
Thursday: Hot Chip's Alexis Taylor (RSVP only)
Admission free / All welcome
Join us for a two-day event for London Craft Week that celebrates the past, present and future of the piano. Featuring renowned piano makers Steinway & Sons, with presentations from pioneering music researchers from Plymouth University, Piano Craft will reveal the extraordinary craftsmanship, virtuoso skill and imagination it takes to build, prepare for performance, play and explore one the most iconic instruments in the world.
Inside a Steinway piano's perfectly crafted exterior lies a beautifully engineered machine with over 12,000 individual parts. Starting with a deconstructed piano at the start of each day, Steinway's skilled craftsmen will reassemble the instrument piece by piece in order to reveal its anatomy. Sharing insights into the craftsmanship and processes that go into building each piano, the event will explain how these incredible instruments produce such a rich range of sound. At the end of the day we'll celebrate the craft of performance with live music from Steinway pianist Jason Bae – plus a special solo performance by Alexis Taylor from Hot Chip.
About the Artists
Steinway & Sons pianos are the choice of nine out of ten concert pianists as well as countless professionals and amateurs. Since 1853, its pianos, each of which takes around one year to make, have set an uncompromising standard for sound, craftsmanship, design and investment. Master to apprentice, generation after generation, every Steinway is built with decades of experience by artisans who take pride in ‘building the best piano possible’ as once stated by Henry E. Steinway. The company has two factories based in Hamburg and New York. For this special event we'll be joined by highly skilled Steinway technician, Rob Johnson and Technical Services Manager, David Widdicombe.
Plymouth University will introduce, with talks and presentations, a selection of science and future research projects that investigate sound with composer and filmmaker Dr Alexis Kirke (who has been called 'the Phillip K. Dick of contemporary music'), Dr Mathew Emmett and Dr Pete Davis – whose presentation explores Sonic Data and tests these concepts through the application of theory of architecture, sound, cognition theory, art, design and cultural theories.
About our Partners
AFFINITY WITH PLYMOUTH UNIVERSITY, based in the Faculty of Arts and Humanities, deliver engagement and knowledge transfer between academia and the creative industries. As a national creative centre of excellence, they are one of the few universities with a commitment to combine and deliver both master craftsmanship and conceptual leadership.
In partnering with Hole & Corner, we are collaborating to deliver an on-going exchange of knowledge between us and championing a society built on an ideas and design driven culture. Making positive change for social good – economically, creatively and culturally.
Coin Street The Oxo Tower has been a Thames-side landmark since the 1930s. Its ancient use, as the site of the Royal Barge, coined its name ‘Bargehouse Street’, although its uses since have varied widely. By the late 1970s the land had become derelict and, while under threat of development, was bought by social enterprise Coin Street Community Builders who developed it into the thriving mixed-use hub it is today.