The creator of the world's largest piano visits Ballarat

THE creator of the world’s largest piano visited Ballarat this week to speak about how he made the instrument.

New Zealand’s Adrian Mann, 25, started building the 5.7-metre piano from scratch when he was just 16.

Ballarat piano tuner Phil Cockerill invited Mr Mann to Victoria after hearing him talk about the “Alexander” piano in Wellington.

“People told him he couldn’t do it, and now he’s had famous concert pianists from all around the world play it,” Mr Cockerill said.

Mr Mann said he was interested by the deep sounds that longer piano strings would produce.

“The whole thing has been about the sound,” he said.

“I asked my piano teacher why there was copper on the strings and how long the string would be if there was no copper on them and she said the string would go on forever.

“I went home and found out how long that was, and the sound from that experiment really inspired me.” 

Mr Mann said he spent four-and-a-half years building the piano, but didn’t tell too many people because they would think he was crazy. 

“It was such a big part of my life. I was just working on that all the time. Fitting school in was quite tricky,” said Mr Mann. 

Mr Cockerill said Mr Mann had visited Sovereign Hill while in town and took the opportunity to play all of the attraction’s historic pianos.

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