It might be a revolutionary idea for the world of music: a piano that enable musicians to alter the tuning while playing.
Its name is Fluid Piano and it was invented in 2009 by the British composer Geoffrey Smith. The instrument looks like a typical acoustic piano, but has a system of sliders that enable pianists both to alter each note individually and separately by precise Microtonal intervals per note and to radically change the tuning.
The invention breaks new ground for creative composers and skilled players, but its first aim, according to his creator, is to cooperate to the conservation and development of traditional music based on different tunings, like the Indian and the Middle eastern ones.
Mr. Smith said: “If you’re going to start delving into different cultures and bring those influences into your work you need to think about tuning and the traditional piano simply can’t cut it. The piano, for me, is absolutely useless in a non-western context because it can’t respond to the subtle and fluid tuning of other cultures.”
It is not coincidence that the first musician to record an album with Fluid Piano is the Indian Utsav Lal, a young composer and pianist who mixes raga traditional music with elements from jazz and classical western tradition.
“The Fluid Piano Album”, that was released July 1st 2016, is just the first example of the infinite uses of this revolutionary instrument, but the videos of the recording on YouTube can help you to get an idea of the functioning of this astonishing instrument.
“I’ve said to musicians they might feel insecure about this piano, they might feel scared. But if they embrace it they will have this big feeling of liberation, a big high,” explained Mr. Smith before the presentation of the Fluid Piano.
Click HERE to see the video