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21323 Grand Piano is an Ideas set released on August 1, 2020.

Background

The piano is an acoustic, stringed musical instrument invented in Italy by Bartolomeo Cristofori around the year 1700 (the exact year is uncertain), in which the strings are struck by wooden hammers that are coated with a softer material (modern hammers are covered with dense wool felt; some early pianos used leather). It is played using a keyboard, which is a row of keys (small levers) that the performer presses down or strikes with the fingers and thumbs of both hands to cause the hammers to strike the strings. The word piano is a shortened form of pianoforte, the Italian term for the early 1700s versions of the instrument, which in turn derives from gravicembalo col piano e forte[1] and fortepiano. The Italian musical terms piano and forte indicate "soft" and "loud" respectively, in this context referring to the variations in volume (i.e., loudness) produced in response to a pianist's touch or pressure on the keys: the greater the velocity of a key press, the greater the force of the hammer hitting the strings, and the louder the sound of the note produced and the stronger the attack. The name was created as a contrast to harpsichord, a musical instrument that does not allow variation in volume; compared to the harpsichord, the first fortepianos in the 1700s had a quieter sound and smaller dynamic range.

A piano usually has a protective wooden case surrounding the soundboard and metal strings, which are strung under great tension on a heavy metal frame. Pressing one or more keys on the piano's keyboard causes a wooden or plastic hammer (typically padded with firm felt) to strike the strings. The hammer rebounds from the strings, and the strings continue to vibrate at their resonant frequency.[4] These vibrations are transmitted through a bridge to a soundboard that amplifies by more efficiently coupling the acoustic energy to the air. When the key is released, a damper stops the strings' vibration, ending the sound. Notes can be sustained, even when the keys are released by the fingers and thumbs, by the use of pedals at the base of the instrument. The sustain pedal enables pianists to play musical passages that would otherwise be impossible, such as sounding a 10-note chord in the lower register and then, while this chord is being continued with the sustain pedal, shifting both hands to the treble range to play a melody and arpeggios over the top of this sustained chord. Unlike the pipe organ and harpsichord, two major keyboard instruments widely used before the piano, the piano allows gradations of volume and tone according to how forcefully or softly a performer presses or strikes the keys.

Most modern pianos have a row of 88 black and white keys, 52 white keys for the notes of the C major scale (C, D, E, F, G, A and B) and 36 shorter black keys, which are raised above the white keys, and set further back on the keyboard. This means that the piano can play 88 different pitches (or "notes"), going from the deepest bass range to the highest treble. The black keys are for the "accidentals" (F♯/G♭, G♯/A♭, A♯/B♭, C♯/D♭, and D♯/E♭), which are needed to play in all twelve keys. More rarely, some pianos have additional keys (which require additional strings). Most notes have three strings, except for the bass, which graduates from one to two. The strings are sounded when keys are pressed or struck, and silenced by dampers when the hands are lifted from the keyboard. Although an acoustic piano has strings, it is usually classified as a percussion instrument rather than as a stringed instrument, because the strings are struck rather than plucked (as with a harpsichord or spinet); in the Hornbostel–Sachs system of instrument classification, pianos are considered chordophones. There are two main types of piano: the grand piano and the upright piano. The grand piano is used for Classical concerto solos, chamber music, and art song, and it is often used in jazz and pop concerts. The upright piano, which is more compact, is the most popular type, as it is a better size for use in private homes for domestic music-making and practice. Upright pianos are also widely used in elementary and secondary schools, music school practice rooms, and in smaller churches.

During the 1800s, influenced by the musical trends of the Romantic music era, innovations such as the cast iron frame (which allowed much greater string tensions) and aliquot stringing gave grand pianos a more powerful sound, with a longer sustain and richer tone. In the nineteenth century, a family's piano played the same role that a radio or phonograph played in the twentieth century; when a nineteenth-century family wanted to hear a newly published musical piece or symphony, they could hear it by having a family member play a simplified version on the piano. During the nineteenth century, music publishers produced many types of musical works (symphonies, opera overtures, waltzes, etc.) in arrangements for piano, so that music lovers could play and hear the popular pieces of the day in their home. The piano is widely employed in classical, jazz, traditional and popular music for solo and ensemble performances, accompaniment, and for composing, songwriting and rehearsals. Although the piano is very heavy and thus not portable and is expensive (in comparison with other widely used accompaniment instruments, such as the acoustic guitar), its musical versatility (i.e., its wide pitch range, ability to play chords, louder or softer notes and two or more independent musical lines at the same time), the large number of musicians and amateurs trained in playing it, and its wide availability in performance venues, schools and rehearsal spaces have made it one of the Western world's most familiar musical instruments.

LEGO.com Description

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Do you have a passion for music? Do you like to relax by focusing on a fun, hands-on project in your free time? If so, this incredible LEGO® Ideas Grand Piano model kit (21323) is just the creative activity for you.

Beautiful and playable Feel the pride of building a sophisticated, brick-built version of a concert grand piano that you can actually play music with! Recreate the hammer action of each piano key, the moving pedal and authentic details such as the propped-open top lid and fallboard. Turn on the motor and then you are all set to play wonderful music – select user play on the free LEGO Powered Up app to play the notes yourself or activate auto play and just listen.

LEGO sets for your lifestyle Take some time out and enjoy creating a LEGO musical masterpiece to display in your home or workplace. Part of a collection of LEGO building sets for adults, it makes a truly special birthday present or Christmas gift for yourself, the musician, piano player or hobbyist in your life.

  • Drum roll please as we proudly introduce the first-ever, playable LEGO® Grand Piano! Experience the hands-on pleasure of creating a highly sophisticated LEGO concert piano model and then play beautiful music with it.
  • The LEGO® Ideas Grand Piano (21323) has a removable 25-key keyboard, authentic hammer action, moving dampers and pedal, and motor. Combined with the LEGO Powered Up app, you can play a tune yourself or automatically.
  • Revel in the authentic design details of this beautiful model, from the top lid that can be propped up just like a real grand piano’s, to the opening fallboard and piano leg wheels, plus a height adjustable bench.
  • If you are looking for a creative DIY project, this 3,662-piece model building kit is ideal for you. So, take some time out and click your stress away with a rewarding challenge that will leave you feeling revitalized.
  • The piano measures over 8.5” (22.5cm) high, 12” (30.5cm) wide and 13.5” (35.5cm) deep when closed. A stylish item for your home or workplace, it also makes a cool gift for musicians, music-lovers, pianists and hobbyists.
  • To power up the grand piano’s self-playing function, you’ll need 6 AAA batteries (not included) and the free LEGO® Powered Up app – choose user play to play the notes yourself or auto play to listen to 1 of 4 songs.
  • Clear instructions help you to build with confidence and really enjoy the process, even if you are a LEGO® newcomer. Also included is a coffee-table-style booklet about this grand piano set’s fan designer and more.
  • This LEGO® Ideas building set for adults is part of a collection of inspiring model kits designed for the discerning hobbyist who relishes an immersive, hands-on DIY project.
  • Since 1958, LEGO® building bricks have met the highest industry standards, which ensures they are consistent, compatible and connect and pull apart easily every time.
  • LEGO® bricks and pieces are rigorously tested to meet exacting safety and quality standards, so you can be sure that this collectible grand piano model is as robust as it is beautiful.


Notes

  • This is the first LEGO Ideas set to be for 18+ years of age.
  • This set uses LEGO's first-ever logo from 1934 on one of the black 2 x 2 plates used for the inside of the fallboard. The logo is printed in gold to fit in with the "vintage" design of the piano.
  • The grand piano is connected to a specially designed LEGO app. While the set does have hammer action, it does not produce real music. Instead, the keys (when the set is equipped with batteries) are connected to the app and play electronic music from your phone when the piano is played.

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