Written: Wednesday, June 16, 2010
Gertrude's Steinway by Christopher M. Bohan
Gertrude has a beautiful Steinway with real ivory keys and polished brass pedals. The bench looks as if it hasn’t been sat on – ever. In fact, it is a new bench. The old one, now a planter in the backyard, had seen its day and was a little too rickety and worn to support the daily deluge of little Mozarts that grace Gertrude’s den.
Gertrude adores the new bench and is looking forward to watching it age as each new pupil learned to walk the keys with their tiny little fingers. There are four piano bench-planters in the backyard. You wouldn’t think a piano bench would wear that quickly, but to Gertrude, it is more a matter of aesthetic than support. If a student sits on a beautiful bench, they can’t help but feel beautiful themselves. They always sit more upright on a new bench. Once their backs begin to slouch, it is time for a new bench.
The students never notice the new benches, nor comment when the benches begin to show wear. But Gertrude can tell the difference in their playing. Gertrude believes a proper seat is proper for perfect playing.