On March 5th 1853, German immigrant HENRY E. STEINWAY founded STEINWAY & SONS in New York City with the goal of building the best piano possible. In the pursuit of that goal, he developed the unparalleled STEINWAY and built a legacy that stands as one of America’s greatest success stories. Today, Steinway have created two other piano brands; the Essex & the Boston piano lines; each incorporating the latest Steinway & Sons technical advancements, patents & specified Steinway materials, assembled in different factories.
To Celebrate the founding of the iconic Steinway & Sons company, we are offering spectacular savings on all Steinway – including the new Spirio and Spirio R, Boston and Essex Pianos — Save thousands.
Since 1853, STEINWAY & SONS has built the pianos by which all others are judged. Every STEINWAY grand and upright piano is a masterpiece of handcrafted precision and a consummate work of art—painstakingly built by experienced artisans with unending passion for their craft. And today’s STEINWAYS are the best STEINWAYS yet, supported by generations of expertise and state-of-the-art technological advances.
Celebrate the 166th Anniversary of STEINWAY & SONS—an iconic brand and an indelible piece of American musical history—with no interest for 66 months.
Models Available with 0% financing for 66 weeks:
ESSEX by Steinway
EUP-111e 45″ upright
EUP-123s 48.5″ upright
EGP-155 5’1″ grand
BOSTON by Steinway
UP-118S 47″ upright
UP-118E 47″ upright
UP-132E 52″ upright
GP-178 PEII Anniversary Edition 5’10” grand
GP-156 PEII 5’1″ grand
STEINWAY & SONS
K-52 52″ upright
Model M 5’7″ grand
Model O 5’11” grand
Model B 6’11” grand
Model A 6’2″ grand
Model D 8’11” grand
*Financing subject to approval. Offer expires April 5, 2019.
On Friday March 8th after concluding the annual Steinway & Sons meeting in Washington D.C., Piano Centre was one of 50 authorized Steinway dealers invited to a private tour of the White House. A memorable experience and fantastic to witness the historic White House Steinway & Sons model D Art Case piano, performed on by pianist Russell Wilson of the Marine Band (Pictures Below).
At a ceremony on December 10, 1938, this grand piano was presented to President Franklin D. Roosevelt for the White House by Mr. Theodore Steinway, on behalf of the Steinway family. The 300,000th Steinway piano, it was built to replace another Steinway at the White House – #100,000, a gilded and painted grand piano which had been given in 1903 (now on exhibit in the Smithsonian Institution).
Seeking to create a unique and distinguished “State Piano”, Eric Gugler – a New York architect, friend of the Roosevelts, and White House consultant in the 1930s – chose a square form with simpler lines than the routine double-curve form. The case was made of fine Honduran mahogany. Although it measures seven inches longer than the standard nine-foot Steinway grand, it has identical musical works.
At Mr. Steinway’s suggestion Dunbar Beck, a muralist, executed the gold leaf decoration representing “five musical forms indigenous of America” – a New England barn dance; a lone cowboy playing his guitar; the Virginia reel; two black field hands, one clapping and one dancing; and an Indian ceremonial dance. Albert Stewart, a sculptor, executed the three gilded mahogany legs carved as American eagles.
Since the musical works had deteriorated somewhat, the piano was returned to the manufacturer in 1979 for a major rebuilding of the instrument within its historic case. Although used in the East Room from its presentation to 1989, since then it has stood principally in the Entrance Hall, where it is often played by members of the Marine Band during social functions.
Office of the Curator, The White House
STEINWAY & SONS SPIRIO, the world’s finest high resolution player piano, features a musical tribute to Aretha Franklin, the Queen of Soul, from the Prince of New Orleans, Davell Crawford.
Aretha Franklin’s special place in pop music as a pioneer and an influencer is undeniable. The emotion she brought to a diverse group of signature tunes is evoked by Davell Crawford in a set of arrangements produced exclusively for SPIRIO.
Crawford also appears in this month’s SPIRIOSYNC video, a performance of “Day Dreaming” live from Steinway Hall, New York. He spoke to us about the music of Aretha Franklin.
We also explore David Bowie’s music through arrangements by Meral Guneyman, scale the heights of virtuosic pianism with Konstantin Scherbakov, and get a taste of Bollywood music-making with Sunny Choi.
Classical pianists look to Liszt’s 12 Transcendental Etudes as a career achievement, but Konstantin Scherbakov brings his formidable virtuosity not just to these works, but also to a “companion” set of Etudes Sergei Lyapunov wrote to honor Liszt and to complete the cycle, both musically and in degree of difficulty. This monumental group of 24 Transcendental Etudes marks Scherbakov’s SPIRIO debut. Scherbakov spoke to STEINWAY about his recording for SPIRIO and STEINWAY & SONS label.
Meral Guneyman’s new arrangements of classic David Bowie songs are presented on spirio for the first time. “Life on Mars,” “Let’s Dance,” “Space Oddity” and others take new shape when heard on solo piano — familiar yet different, for fans and as a discovery for the unenlightened.
Similarly, the music of Bollywood will be entirely familiar to fans of the genre (of which there are millions), while for others, Sunny Choi’s arrangements of the most popular tunes provide yet another flavor to the SPIRIO experience.
Each month we features highlights from the SPIRIO catalog. Learn more about the artists, the history and the music found exclusively on SPIRIO.
Seated in the front row as the opening acoustic chords rang out, Gaga and Cooper ascended the stairs and placed themselves at a radiant Steinway piano.
In the Best Picture winning film Green book, Dr. Shirley says to make sure that there’s a Steinway piano at every concert venue, Tony scribbles down “STAINWAY” on a sheet of paper. His doltishness is endearing, not annoying.
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It’s that time of year! We are clearing our used piano inventory – acoustic & digital. Most of these lovely pianos that have been significantly reduced were traded in. A trade-in piano is typically a good instrument for several reasons: They have been maintained, tuned and cared for by families that have players continuing education in need of higher performance instruments. We inspect the pianos from top to bottom as we want to give our customers absolute peace of mind; a piano that you buy from Piano Centre will not fall apart or lose tuning stability. The key mechanism called the action has been checked over and freed of flaws, sticking and uneveness.
All of our used pianos come with a warranty and trade up plan.
Here is a list of used piano inventory in stock (February 20, 2019)
Used Piano Clearance Promotion ends March 6, 2019
Please contact us for more information:
On 13 October 2018 American pianist Brad Mehldau received a very special honour: As godparent of the grand piano no. 1, he unveiled his own piano at STEINWAY & SONS’ presentation of its Elbphilharmonie Limited Edition, enchanting guests at the Elbphilharmonie’s Recital Hall with his performance. For him, it was a very special experience to be able to play a part in this evening. Brad Mehldau is sure of one thing: “I’ll remember it for a very long time.”
The Elbphilharmonie grand piano is a true fantasy piano, whose warm and open tone sang out from the very first moment he played it. “The piano sings back,” says the jazz pianist of the outstanding quality of the Steinway grand piano, “it inspires your performance.”
The experienced pianist knows that it is also extremely valuable to observe the instrument in unity with its surroundings, and he praises the excellent cooperation between the Elbphilharmonie and STEINWAY & SONS.
Problem: New hammers are relatively soft and required saturating with lacquer to harden them before they could be voiced. The use of lacquer in large quantity makes voicing more difficult and the results less predictable.
Solution: Although actions always went through a “pounding” by machine to settle cloth and felt parts, they now go through a second, more forceful pounding to naturally harden the hammer felt before voicing so that little hardening with lacquer is needed. The pianos come out of the factory closer to their final voice, and need less voicing by the technician in the field; and, for the end user, the voicing is more stable over time.
Problem: Using a special fixture, hammers were glued to the shanks in groups. This was fast and efficient in the short term, but because hammers slightly shift position as the glue dries, they required a lot of adjusting later on. The twisting and bending of the shanks during this adjustment put potentially damaging pressure on the action parts.
Solution: Hammers are installed individually, just as they would be in a rebuilding shop. This is much more labor-intensive in the short term, but is more accurate and eliminates most of the need for later adjusting.
Problem: Stainless-steel damper wires sometimes wouldn’t slide freely in the damper guide-rail bushings; dampers would stick in the up position, causing notes to sustain.
Solution: Damper wires are now made of nickel silver, which takes a higher polish than stainless steel, and is more malleable for easier adjustment. They are polished in an ultrasonic cleaner (shown), and the damper guide-rail bushings are impregnated with Teflon powder, which reduces friction to near zero.
Problem: Action parts were screwed to the action frame by hand, resulting in slight variations in the positions of parts on the frame from instrument to instrument. These variations then had to be eliminated by careful adjustment in the factory or the field.
Solution: Action parts and screws are inserted by a machine indexed to the scale of the piano. Installation is uniform and exact, so there is little or no need for adjustment later.
Problem: Strips of felt that are to become hammers must first be “skived,” or trimmed, into a pre-hammer shape so that when the strips are bent in the hammer-making molds, the resulting hammers will be of the correct size and shape. This used to be done using unstable wooden fixtures, and resulted in hammer sizes and shapes that varied from instrument to instrument, which required that more hammer filing be done before voicing in the factory or in the field.
Solution: A proprietary skiving machine (not shown) uses CNC technology to shape the felt strips to the exact specifications originally developed for each piano model so that the hammers turn out the same every time. Very little hammer filing is then needed prior to voicing.
Problem: Steinway wanted to enhance the tonal sustain in the high treble.
Solution: Thinning the hammershanks of the highest 20 notes to reduce their mass and increase their flexibility allows those hammers to rebound from the strings faster, which increases the volume level of their tonal sustain.
Problem: Action specifications such as the tightness of action centers and the dimensions of action parts vary slightly with changes in humidity. This contributed to a lack of uniformity among instruments, as well as the need for greater adjustment in the field.
Solution: Humidity control was integrated into the action department’s closed-loop dust-collecting system.
Problem: Buckskin, a natural suede-finished leather made from the hides of deer or sheep, was used in several places in the action where a tough, smooth material is needed, but it varied in thickness and quality from skin to skin. These variations affected critical action dimensions and made a consistent action regulation more difficult.
Solution: Buckskin has been replaced by Ecsaine, a synthetic material with the same tough, suede-like, low-friction properties as buckskin, but which is uniform from batch to batch. Shown here, covered in Ecsaine, are the hammershank knuckles. A side benefit of the change has been reduced action noise.
Problem: Although it appears flat to the naked eye, the keybed is actually very slightly curved to optimally fit the key frame, on which the keys move. Planing and sanding the keybed to produce this curvature was done by eye, with much variation from piano to piano. This resulted in additional adjustments in the factory and in the field to properly “bed,” or fit, the key frame to the keybed, and to adjust the key height.
Solution: The keybed is now machined with CNC equipment to ensure greater uniformity from one instrument to the next. Less work is required to bed the key frame, and key height is more uniform.
Problem: The angle of the music rack was fixed and did not suit all players.
Solution: The angle of the music rack can now be adjusted to the player’s preference.
Problem: The sharp edges and corners of the case on satin ebony models didn’t hold the finishing material well, leading, with handling, to premature wearing away of the finish in these areas.
Solution: The corners and edges are now slightly rounded, which better holds the finish and resists wear longer.
Problem: Unfinished case woodworking on the bottom of the piano was hidden by black paint.
Solution: The woodworking on the bottom is nicely finished, and shown off under a clear coat of lacquer.
Problem: Trapwork on the underside of the piano looked rough, and was painted black by brush, which did not create a neat appearance.
Solution: Trapwork blocks are now sanded, given rounded corners, and spray-painted satin black before mounting on the piano.
Problem: The high-gloss soundboard varnish showed finish imperfections too easily, and took too much time to cure.
Solution: A satin lustre (semigloss) varnish shows finish imperfections less, looks better, and takes less time to cure, allowing fewer foreign particles to settle in the drying varnish.
Problem: Over time, the fallboard naturally develops scratches from players’ fingernails. Due to the “grain” of a satin finish, scratches showed up prominently on satin-finished fallboards and were difficult to buff out.
Solution: The fallboard on all models is now finished in high-gloss lacquer. Such a finish has no grain; while it still scratches, the scratches don’t show as much and can be buffed out more easily.
Problem: Plates can get scratched during screw and bolt installation. Plates are difficult to touch up well.
Solution: Protective plate shields made of polystyrene were developed to fit each model. No touchup is required afterward.
Problem: During stringing and other production work, the case arms, stretcher, and keybed would get scratched and dented, and would have to be touched up at the end of production. Often, the touchup was noticeable as such.
Solution: Plastic “armor,” developed to fit the front end of each instrument, is kept in place during the manufacturing process to minimize scratches and dents. The result is that little or no touchup is required.
Problem: The area around the tuning pins can get scratched easily during stringing, and is difficult or impossible to touch up.
Solution: Protective plate shields made of thin sheets of rubber were developed to fit each model. No touchup is required afterward.
Problem: Dirt and dust would get into the bass-string windings during production, sometimes resulting in discoloration and tonal impairment.
Solution: To keep dirt and dust out, the pianos are covered with plastic sheeting when not being worked on.
Problem: Despite best efforts to keep out dust, invariably it would get into the soundboard varnish as it dried, making for a less-than-perfect finish.
Solution: Create a positive-pressure clean room in which to spray and cure the soundboard varnish, resulting in a near-perfect finish.
Here are the steps of how we open and properly set up a new grand piano! The grand piano pictured here is a new Steinway & Sons model M 5’7″ grand piano