Reviewer’s grade: B+
“Note by Note” explores the creation of a Steinway grand piano by documenting its journey from the forest to the concert hall. From the bending room and the finishing and stringing to the many rounds of tuning, we see the exhaustive work that goes into a fine musical instrument over the course of a year. Underneath the field-trip-to-a-factory-style interviews with workers and craftspeople, there is an interesting examination of how those builders endow an amalgamation of wood and metal with their own human passions the same way the musicians who receive the final product do.
We also see the effect the instruments have on professional and amateur pianists alike as we witness different musicians choosing pianos for concerts and families purchasing Steinways for their burgeoning musical prodigies. The end product is a tribute to the superiority of human craftsmanship over mass production and a celebration of art over pure commercialism. Screening Saturday and Sunday at the Oklahoma City Museum of Art. NR