New Owner Promises Handmade Steinways For Years To Come – NPR

For 160 years, the pianos made by Steinway & Sons have been considered the finest in the world. So when hedge fund billionaire John Paulson recently bought the company, it struck fear in the hearts of musicians: Would the famously handcrafted pianos be changed, for the sake of efficiency? Paulson, who owns several Steinways himself, says nothing will change.

Great pianists need great pianos. Vladimir Horowitz, the famous Russian pianist, used to travel with his own personal Steinway when he concertized around the world.

Most concert halls and conservatories in America own Steinways, and pianists from Lang Langto Harry Connick, Jr. to Billy Joel are Steinway artists.

This fall, Russian pianist Kirill Gerstein was in New York City, set to appear with the New York Philharmonic. He sat at the keyboard of a Steinway D, a 9-foot concert grand, at Steinway Hall, the company’s lavish showroom in Manhattan….

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