When you play the piano, do you do any advance preparation?
Each person will surely have his or her own habits, such as wiping the keys lightly, stretching the fingers, adjusting the height of the chair, and so on.
So have you ever put a screw between the strings, or a ball, or a fork or spoon on it? Don’t be offended that you would do such outrageous things to your precious piano. In fact, pianos are officially used in this way.
Even beginning piano students may be familiar with the famous piece “4 minutes and 33 seconds. John Cage, the composer of this eccentric piece, invented the method of playing the piano described above in 1940.
The name “prepared piano” comes from the English word prepared, which means that various materials are prepared for the strings in advance. The type of material and the location of the strings to be placed are described in detail in the score, so all the player has to do is place screws, rubber pieces, etc. on the piano as instructed. The method of playing the piano is not only to pluck the keys and enjoy their tones, but also to play directly by plucking the strings of the piano with the fingers, which is called internal playing.
In fact, this pre-paired piano is a matter of course, but once it is used in this way, it is difficult to play the piano in normal tuning when it is put back together, and pianists who play pre-paired piano works usually take their own pianos with them.
In other words, do not put a screw in a piano in your home or practice room without permission just because you are interested in it. That piano will never be useful again!