Fred Yonley – Piano Tuner
I started out working at Brook Mays Music Co. in 1969. I worked for a while in the Band Dept. and was head of it for a while. This provided some good business experience. I later found interest in the piano dept. and started working there. They had a very good blind tuner that came in every day to tune the warehouse pianos. I watched and listened to him and got some good tips. The piano shop had some interesting people working there. Everyone seem to have been influenced by Mr. Perry who worked there previously. I believe that he worked at Steinway in New York at one time.
I joined the Piano Technicians Guild in 1974 after passing the required exams to be a Registered Craftsman (This classification is now called Registered Piano Technician). Attending Regional Seminars and National Conventions is a very good way to attain knowledge about piano technology. I have also attended day long and/or multi-day classes provided by Steinway, Baldwin, Yamaha and others. I have also focused on servicing Steinway Pianos. They have some unique features that separate them from all the others.
I have attended many Steinway classes on voicing, regulation, and damper action work. I enjoy working on Yamaha Pianos and dealing with their technical staff.
I started my own company in 1974 and tuned for schools, churches, hotels and a few music companies and of course individuals. I have tuned for many schools in the Richardson I.S.D. since 1978. I have tuned for the Dallas I.S.D. since 1985. I serviced the pianos at Booker T. Washington High School for the Performing Arts from 1995 to 2011-2012 school year. I had a lot of work to do in the secondary schools in Richardson ISD in the 2012-13 school year. I serviced the pianos at East Texas State University from 1975 to 1980 on a part time basis until I decided to concentrate on work closer to home. I will provide references on request.
I have performed service work for Yamaha, Baldwin, Steinway, Kawaii, Young Chang and various others. I am a Damp Chaser Products installer and am on their list as being trained in that area. They offer a line of humidity control products that can protect your piano from the elements and help keep them in better tune. I have tuned for various concerts in the Dallas area, but that isn’t my main area of interest. I prefer to tune for schools, churches and individuals. One has to have a certain type personality to be a concert tuner-technician. I think that I am good enough technically speaking, but may not fit the mold in other ways. It also works the other way. Some concert technicians might not be at their best working on school pianos where minor miracles are often needed.
- Concertmaster of ETSU Orchestra 1978 to1980
- Played violin and viola in the Richardson Symphony 1984-86
- Concertmaster of the Mesquite Symphony Orchestra during their first year 1987-88 and for the first 2 concerts in 2004-05 Season.
- Principal violist, principal second violinist and a section player as needed in MSO.
- Played first violin in the Dallas Opera Orchestra for 2 seasons less one concert 1989-91
- I have played in string quartets and performed for weddings and other events on viola.
- Most recently I have been enjoying singing in church choirs for 17 years.
- Played 1st violin with MSO during their 2005-06 Season.
- Concertmaster of MSO for the 2006-07 Season except for the last concert.
- Aug. 1962 played first violin with the Interlochen Orchestra at the White House. President Kennedy gave an inspirational talk.