18 March 2013

Mainfreight Moves the World's Longest Piano

Here in New Zealand we like nothing more than to have a go at making something out of nothing.

Young Timaru teenager Adrian Mann has taken this a step further and from this, he has built the world’s longest piano.

  • Named the “Alexander” piano after Adrian’s Great, Great Grandfather Alexander Barrie Mann (who incidentally was the maternal cousin of Sir James Matthew Barrie – author of Peter Pan)
  • The piano is 5.7m (18’ 9”) long 
  • It was built by Adrian over four years, starting when he was just 15 years of age
  • Adrian dismantled a few upright pianos and examined them, and tinkered away until he got it right
  • Its home is in a farmer’s shed in Maungati, just south of Timaru, New Zealand

While there have been many concerts by pianists in “the shed”, only four times has the piano been moved. Two of these were just down the road, but when going further Mainfreight have been entrusted with the movement of this precious cargo.

Most recently Mainfreight were asked to move the Alexander Piano for an event which was being held in Oamaru - the 100th anniversary commemorating the 1913 return of the Terra Nova from Scott’s Antarctic expedition.

The legs are removed and the piano is placed on the deck of the truck. Every part of this operation is nerve racking as the piano itself is uninsurable. After securing the piano down it’s off to Oamaru. Once in Mainfreight‘s Oamaru depot, we utilised an 8 metre flat deck trailer and with the help from Paul Johnston and the team gently lifted the piano out of the truck, put the legs back on and loaded onto the flat deck trailer. Then we slowly and carefully drove the piano through Oamaru down to the port so they could have their first rehearsal. We certainly received some interesting looks going through Oamaru!

Being able to move something like this Piano is very special and an experience our team were lucky to share.
Find out more about Adrian Mann and the journey of the “Alexander” piano.


Mainfreight Gently Moves  the Worlds Longest Piano                                         The Alexander Piano

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