Pianos: Tempting Temping

A piano swans in, is the life of the party, then is whisked away under cover of darkness before you can say, 'Oi, Cinders, is that your slipper?' Such is the life of an event hire piano.

A private piano pool party. 

We're indoors, but only just.

It infuriates me to turn up to an event hire job to find the piano lid open. The waitstaff have no place exposing the piano unduly. They so often do something wrong (and I'm not talking about spitting into my soup). Here the prop stick is correct (long stick on inner locator cup) but the 'little lid' or flap has not been opened. This places undue stress on the hinge. Gah.


Does this photo makes the lid flap error clearer? The flap should be folded back onto the main section of the lid before the whole lid is opened. Again, I found the piano like this on arrival. Grr.

A domestic client's piano nook. Not much of a view in this corner of the room but it's an ideal spot for the piano. I have positioned the lid correctly for your edification. Note that the brass hinge is clearly visible. Close the piano lid when not in use. Play with little lid open but big lid closed for personal pleasure. Play with lid as depicted if you seek to impress party guests or delight emojis. Am I the only person on the whole internet banging on about piano lid etiquette? Yes, yes I am.

Back to Centennial Park's fishbowl room. You can have Xanadu-style roller skates for your piano if you wish.

Just so you know.

This perplexing convention was not a wedding expo (they're common) but a marriage expo. What the hell is that?

Hapless Homer runs a night class. He accidentally makes his class compelling by blabbing personal stuff about Marge.

Permitting the class to view the family at home is one of his several misjudgements.

One of the event hire pianos takes one of its many trips down to the stage via the State Theatre's cage lift.

The piano has landed. Another cage prevents entry to the stage until the lift is unloaded. 

I turn up to this job and get a surprise. One of those Disklavier (self-playing) mechanisms has been fitted to the flagship piano. It's a bloody hassle to access the action if any mechanical issues occur. That metal whatsit obscuring the hammer shanks is hooked up to a bombsworth of wiring. Gah.

I tuned and left. I got a call saying the piano would be delivered later than planned. Well what did I just tune then? It transpired that I had tuned the wrong piano [cue dramatic sting]. Another company's piano, same model, similar serial number (same first digit) and similar condition. It was dark sidestage with the only light my battery-powered headlamp. So, no Disklavier in 'my' piano. Good.

There's a snooty view around every second corner in Sydney. The piano is wheeled along this verandah and into the snooty room. Not just any snooty room, not just any snooty house. I see so many snooty houses that this is just another on the list... although the gate is controlled by the AFP. No, it's not a journo raid with musical accompaniment.

The piano is positioned then it's my turn. This is the theoretical Sydney pad for the sitting Prime Minister. One bloke famously stayed in his own residence, because it was off the scale for opulence and made this joint seem like a shanty. I haven't kept track of what has happened since then.

Art with silver tea set. POA.

Alabaster profile. POA.

I ensure that there will be no toasting of marshmallows at tonight's opera event. Good thing the piano is only visiting. I'm shown the upright piano that lives here permanently and can't help imagining John Howard having stumbled over chopsticks on it. Or this famed number. Johnny caused controversy at the beginning of his Prime Ministership when he announced that Kirribilli Shanty would be his principal residence. Yes, buggered if I'd move to Canberra from Sydney no matter how much they paid me.

I'm brought a coffee. Can't complain about the service my tax dollars fund. 

I tell a mate (via text) that there are official-looking crests on my shortbreads. Blogging this experience prompted another mate to tell me, 'Those shortbreads are prepared by Prince Charles himself, or vassals under his supervision. Totes organic, and unaffordable for anyone from the Deputy Prime Minister on down. Think yourself lucky.' I do (upon learning this). They are Duchy Originals. Yum.

Are there crests on the floor? I comply with my mate's resquest for a digital peek. Having finished the tuning I seek to thank the maid for my crested shortbreads. I find no one. No matter. My peek into the next room was the highlight of the visit.

I present the Parlimentary Pantry. It's official, Chief Cook and Bottle Washer is the highest office in the land.


Prime Minister Andy (as portrayed by the Simpsons).

The golden years. What? Of The Simpsons, or Australia, Cazzbo?

A different piano event. 1956 is the very year that Kirribilli Shanty 'was set aside for use by Australia's Prime Ministers'. That phrase (from Wikipedia) makes it sound like they all got down there together and partied. 

I thought this end of the shopping centre looked snooty. I've since learned that it's a feast of 'fast fashion' crap that barely survives the first load of laundry. Oooh, my own velvet rope, now that's snooty! 


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