Porsche Design lends a musical edge to the mPiano
After the exaggerated opulence of the Grand Bohemian Piano, Alpha Piano’s suitably au courant-titled mPiano is a breath of minimalist fresh air. Designed in collaboration with Porsche Design, it’s a starkly modern instrument – distilled down to electronic essentials and sporty lines as a kinetic unit itching to floor a hypothetical pedal.
It can do this because the mPiano is an electric piano (the m stands for mechatronic). The heritage of the piano dates back to the founding of Alpha Piano by Mario Aiwasian, who left Bösendorfer to create a digital piano that would meet the standards of classical musicians, yet be easy to transport, set up and adjust. A purely digital MIDI controller, electronic actuators underneath the 88 keys permit fine-tuning of the keyboard’s resistance, replicating anything from a Steinway grand to a Casavant Opus pipe organ to a Yamaha synth. Each key is pressure-sensitive, featuring polyphonic aftertouch – allowing for modulating tweaks like vibrato and volume change with a slide of a finger.
The mPiano is controlled by a custom app, running on a wirelessly-connected iPad set atop the unit. Up to four potential app profiles means the mPiano can simulate four different instruments. The design won it the Red Dot Design Award in March 2016 and Lady Gaga has reportedly already ordered one for her next tour. And if it is good enough for Lady Gaga….