Pianos I Play: LePapillion at Toftrees

Howard C171 Grand Piano

Howard C171 Grand Piano

I play a number of regular shows each week where I bring my own keyboard, usually a Yamaha, Korg, and/or a Casio.

But there are places I perform that have their own pianos. Toftrees Resort in State College PA has a banquet/restaurant space called “LePapillion” that has a nice C171 Howard Grand piano (made by Baldwin).  I play this piano maybe several times a year when I’m contracted for special occasions, usually by the resort. It’s well-tuned, plays evenly and dynamically, and sounds good in the room.

LePapillion Piano 01

My performance is never the focus of the event, but I play for the mood of the room.  Usually that means music for people eating a buffet holiday dinner.  That calls for a lot of familiar standards and pop tunes, nothing too rocking, but a tasty mix of sweet and savory.


Occasionally, depending on the event, I bring a microphone and small speaker for vocals. Then the music can get a bit salty, since it’s usually a happy hour or reception with wine, beer, and mixed drinks involved.  “Sing us a song, Piano Man!”

Posted by: John "JT" Thompson on