Pianola(redirected from pianolas)
Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus.
(1) A mechanism that is attached to a pianino (upright piano) or grand piano to convert it into a mechanical pianoforte.
(2) The company name for a type of mechanical pianoforte. The first model was built in 1887. Each key in the pianola has a special small hammer. Originally, the action of the hammers was controlled by a crank-operated roller, the surface of which was covered with projections positioned in the sequence necessary to reproduce a particular work. In later models (late 19th to early 20th centuries) perforated paper rolls were used to move the keys. As the popularity of the phonograph increased, the pianola fell out of use.