Wes Velkov

Best Piano Tuner, October 2007
 
When performing at Disney Hall, pianists know their instrument has been perfectly tuned. But what happens when the piano is in the concert venue they call home? For about $100, Wes Velkov tunes pianos in an hour. In the business since 1954, he’s kept the ivories at Paramount’s scoring stage up to snuff for two decades (he did the same at Universal for two more). His tools are no different for a classic Steinway than for a 1920s piano made of pressboard: a specialized wrench known as a tuning hammer, plastic and rubber mutes that isolate strings, and lately, a computer program. But his killer app is, of course, his ear.