26 November 2014–MODARTT releases a Toy Piano for Pianoteq.
Often encountered as a child's toy, toy pianos are usually no more than 50 cm (20 inches) in width, and made out of wood or plastic. The first toy pianos were made in the mid-19th century and were typically uprights, although many toy pianos made today are models of grands. The sound is produced by small hammers striking metal rods. Toy pianos offer a unique
timbre that resembles more the celesta than the piano, and is also quite close to other chromatic percussions such as the glockenspiel. This unusual sound has been somewhat of a key appeal to many composers and performers through the centuries, who used the toy piano as a real musical instrument.
The new Toy Piano for Pianoteq is no toy!!
The Michelsonne manufacturer in Paris marketed their toy pianos as "bell-tone pianos". Their
production started in 1939 and ended in 1970 in connection with a devastating fire. The Michelsonne toy pianos are praised for their beautiful unique sound. A Michelsonne toy piano was used by Yann Tiersen in the soundtrack of the movie Le fabuleux destin d'Amélie Poulain a.k.a. Amélie from Montmartre.
The Toy Piano virtual copy in Pianoteq is based on a Michelsonne toy piano model with two octaves and is extended to four octaves. Thanks to the versatility of the physical model, it is possible to add features of traditional pianos, such as for example damping, sustain pedal and soft pedal.
The Toy Piano is included in the optional Celeste instrument pack and requires the latest update of Pianoteq which can be downloaded from the website www.pianoteq.com. The update of the Celeste instrument pack is free for all owners of the pack. A free trial version is also available.