The musical mastery of the world’s great pianists almost defies physical logic. Light as a feather one minute and thunderous as a herd of hippos the next, from slow and stately to faster than a woodpecker on speed in under 60 quavers.

But this instrumental wizardry comes at a price! Here are the truths pianists know all too well.

You play a lot of notes

You’ve got 99 problems, and having 88 keys is one of them!

… Except when you’re an “orchestral pianist”

You’re resigned to the fact you’ll probably have to count 285 bars rest before suddenly playing something difficult and exposed… thanks a bunch contemporary composers!

You’re at the mercy of concert venue pianos

It’s piano roulette when you’re a gigging musician, but it’s invariably either a clapped-out, barely salvageable mess, or such a gorgeously maintained dream you can’t bear to part with it.