I have two pianos in my home. The first one, pictured above, is an antique inherited from my two English great aunties who resided in Vancouver, B.C. This piano was made in England by a London company, Chappell and Company. Amazingly the company is still in existence today and located at the same address as is listed on my piano. Using the serial numbers found inside the piano, I was able to e-mail the company and found that the piano was built between 1880-1890.
My sister Linda at the piano at the great aunties house
The piano is my first musical love. Though I spent many more years playing the flute, I first learned to appreciate and play music on the piano. As a very young girl, I would listen to my mother playing magnificently moving pieces by Beethoven, Rachmaninoff, and Chopin. I was in awe of her talent. Her music books were a mystery to me, with page after page filled with lines of black notes I didn't understand.
I soon began taking piano lessons given by Sister Amy, a quiet, serious nun at the church we attended. She gently taught me to read music and play songs and I have fond memories of her. These memories come to a screeching halt with recollections of the recitals that were inevitable. Being a shy, introverted child, it was more than I could cope with, so the piano lessons came to an end. A year later in the fourth grade I started playing the flute and never looked back at the piano. Until I brought home the estate sale find.
I know I will never play the piano like my mother, but I have returned to my first musical love and hope to continue tickling the ivories for years to come.