Piano technicians at the Richard Davenport workshop:


About the Cast & Filmmakers

of

"American Grand"







Richard Davenport, RPT.


Richard received a B.A. degree in violin performance from

Occidental College, played violin, bass and trumpet 

professionally in several musical ensembles, and taught junior

high school instrumental music before beginning his work on

pianos. Richard's mentor, Norman Neblett, provided the majority of Richard's piano technical training. Richard enhanced his concert skills at Yamaha's concert grand factory in Japan, the Fazioli factory in Italy, and the Bösendorfer factory in Austria.
 
Richard currently teaches chapter seminars, regional and national convention classes for The Piano Technicians Guild. His favorite activity is restoring high quality grand pianos with his associates, "The Happy Merry Workers."



Kayoko Forest, RPT.


Kay joined David L. Abell, fine pianos in Los Angeles in

1978 while working on her Bachelor’s Degree in Music.

While at the store, she became reacquainted with one

of her junior high school music teachers, Richard Davenport.

She has been a Happy Merry Worker in Richard’s shop since 1993, the same year she joined the Piano Technician's Guild. She is the recipient of the Sid Stone Award, the PTG California State Conference's highest honor in 2010 and has served as President of the Los Angeles Chapter for the last 7 years.




Pamella Consoli, RPT.


Pamella studied piano technology under the tutelage of

Frances Mehaffey and  LaRoy Edwards in 1978-79 and

has been a technician in the Pomona Valley area since 1980.

She was president of the Pomona Valley Chapter twice and has been a Registered Piano Technician in the Claremont area since 1980. She is a past-president of the Pomona Valley Chapter Piano Technicians Guild, and has been a Happy Merry Worker at Richard Davenport's piano restoration workshop since 1997.




Mark Stern, RPT.



After 38 years in the aerospace field, Mark Stern

retired in 1989, studied tuning and began working

as an apprentice in Richard Davenport's shop. He earned his RPT, built a modest practice, but, after moving to another community, retired from active piano servicing. Proud to be a Happy Merry Worker, he continues as an apprentice in Davenport's shop while looking forward to his 25-year pin in 2015.





Neema Pazargad



Neema holds a Bachelor and Masters in piano

performance and began studying the craft of the

piano technician in 2010.  Beginning his education with Alan Eder at the California Institute of the Arts, Neema was accepted as a Merry Worker in early 2011 and continues to apprentice with Richard Davenport and the crew on a weekly basis. 

Prior to entering the bowels of the piano, Neema spent ten years as a principal in a General Engineering Contracting firm.  He is currently the Lead Piano Tech at The Colburn School in downtown Los Angeles, and does free-lance piano work in the greater Los Angeles area. 





Alan Eder, RPT.


When Alan Eder tested to become a

Registered Piano Technician with the Piano Technicians Guild,

Richard Davenport was one of his examiners. A few years later, in 1984, after returning from West Africa on a Fulbright Scholarship, Eder was introduced to world-class piano work by Keith Hardesty. At that same time, Alan re-connected with Richard, and their close professional and personal association has flourished ever since.
 
For thirty years now, Alan has been the piano technician for the Herb Alpert School of Music at California Institute of the Arts. There he trains and supervises student assistants and apprentices collectively known as the Wing Nuts (inspired by Richard’s “Happy Merry Workers”). Eder made a video, “Non-Traditional Piano Use,” that has become a primary reference source, has published several articles in the Piano Technicians Journal and has taught many classes at PTG conventions, both on his own, and in collaboration with Richard.



The Filmmakers:


Mike Snyder, Co-Producer/Director.


After studying Journalism and a lifetime of publishing short articles and poetry, Mike Snyder tutored under Leonard Freeman, who created Hawaii 5-0 and wrote many Route 66 episodes. While attending San Diego State University he also learned scriptwriting from Norman Corwin (Dean of American Radio Drama), Paul Gregory (world famous Broadway producer) and Robert McKee (screenwriting guru).

After college Mike wrote for Hart To Hart and several other series before being "drafted" by Jim McAdams (Kojak, The Equalizer, etc.), where he learned the art of producing. Mike produced at Universal Studios, mostly on Airwolf, for five years before striking out on his own. He's written, directed and/or produced six features and scores of reality shows, as well as book trailers, sizzle reels and commercials.




Harry Bromley-Davenport, Co-Producer/Director/Editor.


Harry is not related to the exalted Richard Davenport, the lead character of "American Grand". Not even distantly.

Born into a family of itinerant walnut harvesters, Harry dreamed of becoming a brilliant concert pianist, but failed so utterly that he became a film director instead, a craft conspicuous for its acceptance of rejects.


He was a protégé of the late American feature film director Nicholas Ray and has directed many films of varying awfulness. Surprisingly, his 11 feature films and 35 documentaries have been shown all over the world and have garnered multiple completely useless prizes at international film festivals. His best known film is a repulsive 30 year old monster movie called “Xtro” which is distinguished by having been banned in several countries which automatically lead to it's current cult status.


He still plays the piano very loudly with exuberant inaccuracy.