Chad Mitchell, Associate Member, Piano Technicians Guild

Chad Mitchell Tuning a Piano
Chad Mitchell, Associate Member, Piano Technicians Guild

Hello, I'm Chad Mitchell, the owner and operator of Arcadia Piano Service which I established in 2011 in Phoenix, Arizona.

I grew up in Big Horn, Wyoming. When I was 14, my mother, Virginia Mitchell, bought me a wonderful 1907 H.L. Phillips Old Upright Piano made by Cable-Nelson. Out of curiosity, I dismantled it to clean it up and try to figure out how everything worked and this really sparked my interest in working on pianos.

Several years later at Sheridan Community College in nearby Sheridan, Wyoming where I was studying music, I had the privilege of watching a local blind piano technician, Don Cherni, tune several of the college pianos. I was fascinated by the whole process and Don was impressed that I would sit there for hours and watch him tune all those pianos.

Soon after, out of the blue, one of my instructors, Mrs. Leibinger, suggested that I should consider a career working on pianos.

So, I ordered a piano tuning kit and started trying to learn piano tuning, but several events steared me in other directions and I ended up pursuing other "practical" career paths instead.

Chad Mitchell tuning an old upright piano
Chad tuning a customer's Old Upright Piano

Now that I look back, I realize I should've kept up with piano tuning back then, but in late 2010, after succeeding at everything that didn't satisfy me, I finally took the plunge and began to study Piano Technology via the Randy Potter School of Piano Technology Correspondence Course. Around that time, I also joined the Phoenix, AZ Chapter of the Piano Technicians Guild. There I met and began tutoring with Jim Coleman, Sr., a Registered Piano Technician (RPT) of Tempe, AZ.

Chad Mitchell surrounded by pianos at Stilwell Pianos
Chad surrounded by pianos at Stilwell Pianos

In November 2015, I started doing work for Stilwell Pianos in Mesa, AZ where I help prep, tune, repair, and regulate their showroom pianos.

As an Associate Member of the Piano Technicians Guild, I continue to learn and improve my skills in piano tuning, maintenance, and repair, and am determined to one day become a Registered Piano Technician (RPT) of the Piano Technicians Guild.

I've done a wide variety of jobs: bird dog training for $2/hr when I was a teenager, then Janitor, Dish Washer, Baker, Waiter, Convenience Store Clerk, Call Center Statistician, Document Services Associate at Xerox, and eventually I became an FAA Certificated Aircraft Mechanic and worked at Horizon Airlines in Portland, OR then Boeing in Mesa, AZ. And, finally, now I'm doing what I really love to do, and that's tuning and working on pianos.

And, best of all, after I work on a customer's piano, it gives me great satisfaction when they love the result and can truely enjoy their piano.