Imagine the cacophony: More pianos are being thrown out these days in a mangle of legs, keys, and twisted wire, reports the New York Times. Why the unceremonious dumping? Well, their value is plummeting, electronic keyboards are more affordable, and music education is suffering from budget cuts. "Instead of spending hundreds or thousands to repair an old piano, you can buy a new one made in China that’s just as good, or you can buy a digital one,” says one expert.
Even more heartbreaking: After pianos are sent to the dump, they are sometimes dismantled for parts and even burned for firewood. Such destruction is striking an emotional chord in many people—as can be seen in the comments section of a YouTube video that depicts the death of a piano. “It is the most emotionally charged piece of furniture that there is,” says a piano restorer. "When I have to say: 'You’ve buried your grandmother. You have to bury her piano,' it’s a really hard thing."