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Steinway Piano: Through the Years

May 22, 2008
All pianos are the same, right? They all have 88 keys, some black and some white, a couple of pedals and a bench. But no, that's not all. Not all instruments are held to the same standards as a Steinway piano and it is for this reason that they are so popular. Solid craftsmanship and innovation are the backbone of the company. So what exactly is it that makes this instrument so special? A look into the evolution of the instrument and the company will tell you.

Family. History. Tradition. Craftsmanship. Innovation. These are the main elements that make up a Steinway piano.

A Story of Success

Henry Engelhard Steinway was a cabinetmaker born in Germany where he built his very first piano in his kitchen. As an immigrant in Manhattan, he formed the company Steinway & Sons in 1853. The first instrument sold under the company name went for $500, a mere portion of what they are worth today. With his five sons, Henry went on to develop one of the most requested and revered pianos in the world. Royalty and accomplished musicians alike prefer this instrument above all others.

Over the years, Henry and his sons developed and improved on their Steinway piano. They won awards and accolades world wide. When Henry died in 1871, his sons continued the family business and kept the tradition of making quality instruments. It wasn't long before manufacturing plants were opened in London and Germany. Illustrating their drive for innovation, the family owns 114 patents, one of which is for a concert grand design.

The Product

Approximately 5,000 pieces are built each year and each one takes about a year to complete. With every style, each component is made from the best materials and each lends to the unique sound and design of the instrument.

The instruments are made of different woods to attain the strength and the sound, as well as the beauty each instrument is known for. Eastern rock maple is sliced into 18 layers 3/16 of an inch thick and is used for the rim of the grand piano while spruce is used for the Diaphragmatic soundboard because of its superior acoustic qualities. These are just a few of more than a thousand details in construction and design that make a Steinway unique to any other instrument. No component is used until it has been through rigorous quality control measures.

As a result of the dedication to quality workmanship and materials, the Steinway is the preferred instrument to around 90% of concert pianists who perform worldwide. While other companies mass produce their instruments, it is evident that people are willing to wait for quality. With only 5,000 being produced a year, they do not sit in the showroom for long. And, while they may be more expensive than their mass-produced counterparts, the old saying is really true- "you get what you pay for." It also goes to show what a hard-working family can accomplish when they don't compromise on their dreams. Because of their continual development in pianos, we get to enjoy some of the most beautiful music in the world.
About the Author
Steinway pianos in Louisiana remark a tradition of quality pianos. Through years of commitment to excellence our knowledgeable keyboard department staff is ready to help you find the right digital instrument to meet your needs. Explore the fine line of Steinway pianos at http://www.hallpiano.com.
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