page contents Fine-tuning the art of piano-making with Paolo and Luca Fazioli – The News Headline

Fine-tuning the art of piano-making with Paolo and Luca Fazioli

To the numerous sounds you’ll be expecting to be produced by way of a woodland, believe together with this: the sound of the piano. The majestic “purple spruce” rising within the Val di Fiemme of Italy’s Dolomites has been prized by way of device makers for hundreds of years.

To look why, “CBS Sunday Morning’s” Seth Doane adopted within the snowshoe tracks of an Italian woodland ranger and Luca Fazioli, a second-generation piano maker.

“This can be a excellent tree for a resonating picket,” Luca advised Doane.

Sure, “resonating.” This most likely 200-year-old “purple spruce” has excellent acoustic houses as a result of, at greater than 7,000 ft, those timber — dormant in wintry weather months — develop slowly. That produces a fascinating, even picket grain.  

One of the most highest planks finish up on the Fazioli’s piano manufacturing unit a pair hours away within the the town of Sacile. It is the place they make one of these device that is grew to become a celeb right into a fan with regards to jazz nice Herbie Hancock.

“I’ve in my contract that I will be able to handiest play a Fazioli piano,” Hancock mentioned. “It simply feels sublime — it appears like an excessively wealthy sound — and it simply begs you to play it.”

“You suppose that is one thing that handiest any person with, what, 14 Grammy’s can pay attention? Or may the remainder of us pay attention?” Doane requested.

“The remainder of you pay attention it,” Hancock mentioned.

Fazioli makes use of a dozen various kinds of picket in one piano, together with African mahogany for the rim, however it is that Italian purple spruce used for the “soundboard” that is key to giving this device its voice.

“The grain of this tree need to be precisely immediately,” Luca mentioned. “Since the sound run throughout the grain.”

In a room of soundboards being “seasoned,” Luca demonstrated how, even at this level, the sound of the piano emerges.

Paolo, Luca’s dad, is the Fazioli who gave this piano its title. He began making those tools 40 years in the past.

“The picket could be very mild — and in the similar time could also be very robust. And for the soundboard — those are the most efficient feature,” Paolo mentioned.

The son of furnishings makers, Paolo used to be serious about the inner-workings of a piano his father were given him as a boy which, he says, sounded “horrible.”

“The piano used to be no longer sounding neatly,” Paolo advised Doane.

“And also you idea, perhaps I will be able to repair it?” Doane requested.

“Sure,” Paolo mentioned. “I get started his solution to find out about the piano — but additionally to seem inside of.”

That interest has been constructed right into a trade using about 50 individuals who end up round 140 hand made pianos a 12 months.

Each and every one can take just about 3 years to construct and promote for upwards of $200,000. Customized fashions can achieve part one million.

In 2003, Paolo Fazioli invited Herbie Hancock to come back to Italy for a excursion.

“He had ready 3 pianos for me. I attempted the primary one, which sounded pretty,” Hancock mentioned. “Then I performed the following one and it had this large sound, like — WOW. Proper? Then I play the 3rd one and it used to be so candy. That it will simply make you cry. I believed, oh, this may increasingly make all of the women cry. I gotta have this one.”

Whilst the piano used to be invented by way of an Italian — Bartolomeo Cristofori — round 1700, it used to be richer nations, together with Austria and Germany, that later perfected its manufacturing.

“Why is it such a lot of other people have no longer heard of a Fazioli?” Doane requested Hancock.

“Hasn’t been round that lengthy,” Hancock mentioned. “So there are numerous people who simply have no idea about Fazioli — he cannot cause them to speedy sufficient.”

That is by way of design. Paolo Fazioli advised us he desires so as to check every one. After workers left for the day. We discovered the 76-year-old nonetheless at paintings.  

“There’s some piano this is normally, they’re very robust, one of the most piano, they’re extra candy,” Paolo mentioned. “And you then should observe the nature at the piano.”

He follows each step with one notable exception.

“Once they come to deliver the piano, the movers, I watch in any other course,” Paolo mentioned. “I do not like to peer it.”

Each and every Fazioli is specific, however what all of them have in not unusual is this type of transparency.

American pianist Rachel Naomi Kudo met Doane at Fazioli’s in-house live performance corridor.

“It actually connects with whomever desires to play it,” Kudo mentioned.

“It’s an inanimate object,” Doane replied.

“Sure, however I consider every piano is alive,” Kudo mentioned. “And it is throughout the performer that it turns into alive for the target market.”

The Juilliard-trained pianist from Chicago demonstrated what this piano can do.

“A mean piano, shall we embrace perhaps the variety is like this, I might say Fazioli — each Fazioli — the capability for expressive vary can be like this,” Kudo mentioned whilst enjoying. “It is stunning.”

Years after enjoying their pianos, Kudo met and married Luca Fazioli.

“You are feeling in love with Fazioli, the piano, sooner than you fell in love with Fazioli, the person,” Doane mentioned.

“In fact, I did not even know that there used to be a person,” Kudo mentioned.

It provides any other measurement to the affection affair right here that is targeted round this device. And it has roots again in that Alpine woodland the place centuries in the past, Luthier Antonio Stradivari were given the purple spruce for his violins.

This particular woodland has inspired generations of musicians and instrument-makers who, in flip, encourage the remainder of us.

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