Category Archives: Arequipa

FPF World Tour, Part 3: Opening Up


Okay, so there were actually a few more things that happened before I left Arequipa.

I returned to La UNSA to work with the music students once again. This time, we pulled apart a piano so they could see how it’s assembled. How the various pieces all fit together.

This is a rare opportunity. As a student, you don’t usually get the chance to take a piano completely apart, because once you open it up and start poking around, it can get really delicate. There’s a lot you have to learn in order to explore without doing any damage.

But I’ll come back to that.

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FPF World Tour, Part 2: Leaving Arequipa

Juan Carlos' piano

Juan Carlos’ piano.

As I mentioned in FPF World Tour, Part 1: Nature Is Nurture, I was preparing to depart from Arequipa for an extensive multi-country journey. I was excited, and I was almost ready. However, there was something I wanted to do before I left.

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Grand Piano Action Regulation: Glide Bolt Adjustments

glide_bolt_3One of the first important steps in grand piano action regulation is the adjustment of glide bolts. The glide bolts sit at four points distributed lengthwise along the center rail of the grand piano action. They have a tuning-pin-shaped protrusion towards their top, a central threaded portion that allows for up-down adjustment, and smooth rounded bottom. The bottom of the glide bolt both provides support for the center rail of the action and allows the piano to easily glide from left to right when the una cord pedal is depressed. Continue reading

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There are these names that keep popping up. Certain people are mentioned again and again in various conversations. It’s like echoes calling me forward, and If I search long enough, I might find their origins.

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Gratitude and Appreciation

Arches and

While staying at la Casa de Melgar I met a painter, accompanied by a group of unusual tourists. This painter takes travelers on tours throughout the world, showing them how to document their experiences through artwork: instead of snapping photos, they paint pictures.

He discussed with me how you can have a richer sense of a place if you take the time to sit and paint it. You’re there for an extended period of time, and can watch the scene change as the hours pass. For example, he had just come from Cuzco where he had been painting the Plaza de Armas over several days’ sessions. Just before he finished his last sitting, a group of school children arrived, and they formed two rows as they waited for some activity. The geometry of it was such a perfect addition to the scene already in process—so he quickly sketched them into the piece before they dispersed.

The experience of a place is never captured in one photo, one video, one conversation, or one story. A memory lives with depth in time, space, and levels of awareness.

You don’t know what will come into frame if you take that extra time to watch and listen.

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Centro Cultural


Sunset over the town

We’re at a halfway point in our journey in this foreign land. I arrived in Peru six months ago with some ambitious goals in mind, but without a completely concrete plan on how to accomplish them. For instance, I had no idea how or if the Ambassador program would evolve. We didn’t know if we could thrive as a business with members on different continents. I knew I wanted to perform a concert somewhere in town, but where? When? How? Continue reading

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Hay Festival


It’s amazing how meeting just one new person can open up hundreds of pathways and tunnels you otherwise never would have found. My first visit to the home of Hernando Torres-Fernández was a prime example of this. An evening filled with friendship and piano stories, it definitely led to a slew of discoveries I hadn’t expected.

Before we parted ways that night, he reminded me of an upcoming event that I might like to attend. The event is called Hay Festival. When Hernando gave me a copy of the program, I it seemed to include many different kinds of thinkers who would be sharing their ideas. But honestly I could hardly decode the Spanish enough to be prepared. My new words of the day became “periodista” and “escritor.” There would be several of these people the conference. Once I found the meaning it made sense: journalists! Their job is to author periodicals; Writers! They might compose a script. So, it would be literary festival of sorts.

There were quite a few lectures I could choose to attend, but where should I begin? Would all the talks be in Spanish? Would I even be able to understand any of it? Continue reading


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