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Note By Note

  Not Rated

Ben Niles

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About the Movie

The most thoroughly handcrafted instruments in the world, Steinway pianos are as unique and full of personality as the world-class musicians who play them. However, in this age of mass production, their makers are a dying breed: skilled cabinet-makers, gifted tuners, thorough hand-crafters. "Note By Note" follows the creation of a Steinway concert grand, #L1037, from forest floor to concert hall. Each piano's journey is complex, spanning 12 months, 12,000 parts, 450 craftsmen, and countless hours of fine-tuned labor. Filmed in key Steinway locations; the factory, Steinway's reserved Bank, and the rooms of private auditions. "Note By Note" is a loving celebration not just of craftsmanship, but of a dying breed of person who is deeply connected to working by hand. In the end, this is an ode to the most unexpected of unsung heroes. It reminds us how extraordinary the dialogue can be between an artist and an instrument crafted out of human hands but borne of the materials of nature.


Rotten Tomatoes Movie Reviews


  • Reviews Counted: 21
  • Fresh: 19
  • Rotten: 2
  • Average Rating: 7.6/10

Top Critics' Reviews

Fresh: Note by Note: The Making of Steinway L1037 follows the painstaking yearlong process of building and fine-tuning a handmade nine-foot concert grand piano. – Stephen Holden, New York Times, Jun 24, 2010

Fresh: A fascinating documentary that more than just piano lovers can enjoy. – Frank Scheck, Hollywood Reporter, Jun 24, 2010

Fresh: Ben Niles' picture is a fascinating and delightful thing. – Andrew O'Hehir,, Jun 24, 2010

Fresh: As a study of stubborn artisanal tradition in the Pro Tools age, Note by Note is a stirring symphony of specialized labor. – Jim Ridley, Village Voice, Jun 24, 2010

Read More About This Movie On Rotten Tomatoes

Customer Reviews

Note by Note: The Making of steinway L1037

A fascinating look inside the dying art of piano-making. A tribute to the labourers whose specialized skills contribute to the making of fine musical instruments.

Note By Note
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Customer Ratings

We have not received enough ratings to display an average for this movie.