I moved to New York to study viola with Leonard Davis, principal violist of the New York Philharmonic, at the Manhattan School of Music. In need of part-time work, I began my career as a piano/technician when I was hired by the MSM to tune their pianos. MSM had 120 Steinway grand pianos, so this was an incredible opportunity to learn about the intricacies and subtleties of these remarkable instruments. The school would regularly bring in some of the best Steinway piano technicians in the world to work on their pianos; Franz Moore, concert grand tuning and voicing, Ralph Buscelli, grand action regulation, and Angelo Andino, soundboards, pin-blocks and stringing. These legends of the piano industry became my friends and mentors early on in my career. MSM also hired a very fine piano rebuilder and restorer, John Hartman, to restore some of their older Steinway grand pianos. I apprenticed with John for a number of years to learn about every aspect of piano rebuilding and restoration.
In the mid-1990s, Ralph Buscelli, the great Steinway action restorer and regulator, retired from the piano business and invited me to take his place as the Piano Action Technician for the New York Piano Center. At the New York Piano Center, my job was exclusively high-level action regulation and restoration of Steinway grand pianos.