Alternatively sized keyboards in action

A playlist  on the PASK YouTube channel features alternatively sized keyboards in action. It includes full performances and excerpts on keyboards with narrow keys, also known as stretto keys

Links to some selected videos are below:-

  • A piano recital followed by a lively panel discussion was held at NCKP (National Conference on Keyboard Pedagogy) on 26 July 2017. Four top pianists/professors performed on a DS6.0® keyboard in a Yamaha CFIIIS: Barbara Lister-Sink, Jessica Johnson, Jovanni-Rey de Pedro and Artina McCain. 
  • A contestant in the 2015 Dallas International Piano Competition, Anna Arazi, won third prize performing on a DS6.0® keyboard. She had never played this keyboard prior to the competition and adjusted completely after just one day of practice. The pain she had been experiencing previously in her arm completely disappeared. See this recording of Anna’s first round performance of Prokofiev’s Piano Concerto no 1.
  • Renowned performers: Carol Leone, and on a piano with DS5.5® keyboard and Anastasia Markina, performing on a piano with DS6.0® keyboard. 
  • An historic performance of Gerhwin’s Rhapsody in Blue by Canadian pianist, Linda Gould, filmed soon after she acquired her DS5.5® keyboard back in 1995. Linda had previously abandoned a career as a performing artist due to a serious injury caused by playing the conventional keyboard. See her story in Personal stories from pianists.
  • See also the video below from a talented amateur pianist in Japan, Daisuke Sakai. He plays a DS5.5® keyboard in a Walter upright piano, and he wrote of his experience: ‘ I have been playing on the piano and I am starting to grow quite accustomed to the keyboard. Inevitably, of course, my first few hours of practicing has been wrought with awkward mistakes, but also with astonishing revelations. It goes without saying that chords which were merely played in wishful daydreaming are quite comfortably reached. That is not even the tip of the iceberg, however, as I saw, as I progressed in my practicing, that the whole gamut of piano playing is infinitely easier with the right keyboard size. Chord leaps, trills, scales, arpeggios, ascending and descending octaves could be played with virtually no effort in comparison to what I had to labor through hitherto. Consider, how I had neglected an Etude of Chopin’s, after seeing that no matter how much I practiced this one passage, it can only sound at best clumsy and amateurish. Indeed, when I played it on the smaller keyboard, I thought to myself, “Wow, I sound like Yefim Bronfman!”’ (Daisuke Sakai, November 2014).

Contributions to this channel are welcome. They can be excerpts , or complete performances by professional or amateur pianists of any age on a keyboard with narrower keys. Comparisons of a pianist playing the same excerpt using the conventional and a stretto keyboard are particularly useful where the difference is apparent). Please email if you have a movie to contribute! 

Recordings and reviews

Dr Carol Leone’s CD: Change of Keys: One Piano, Three Keyboards, featuring works by Hayden, Beethoven, Chopin, Liszt, Debussy and Bartok, was released in 2016. Her CD won silver medals for outstanding achievement in both the Classical and Solo Instrumental categories in the Global Music Awards 2016. You can listen to her CD here:

For four excellent reviews, go to:-, and, and, and download the review from the American Record Guide (Jan/Feb 2017) here:

​You can order the CD here:-

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