Welcome and a happy new Year!

We are hoping that 2016 is as enjoyable a year as the last. After the fun of the holiday festivities I am excited to be back with my pianos and looking forward to the challenges of the year ahead. 2015 ended in a flourish of activity in the showrooms and a superb trip to Grotrian-Steinweg in Braunschweig. After missing a news update in December due to the pace of things I have made this a priority on the seventh day of the new year!

As mentioned above the year ended in the most enjoyable way possible with a trip to the Grotrian-Steinweg factory in the week leading up to Christmas. Travelling with me were a delightful family, with musically talented children, visiting the factory for a selection of a 192 Cabinet grand piano. We were greeted at the factory by Konrad Blumberg with his usual inimitable enthusiasm and good German coffee! After this we were shown to the factory showroom to become acquainted with the three 192’s that had been set up especially for our visit. The challenge began to find the one best suited to the style of the musicians. After about forty minutes one of the three pianos was looking like a clear front runner, time to take a break from selection and tour the factory. As ever, seeing the production and hearing about the quality of design, materials and craftsmanship was impressive and inspirational. There is an atmosphere of assurance and calm in the factory with workers going about their tasks in a deliberate, controlled manner. At no stage of the building of a Grotrian-Steinweg piano is the pressure of speed applied, only quality, always quality. After the tour came lunch followed by a return to the selection where the same piano stood out from the others, this one will make its way to Hertfordshire in January. An immensely enjoyable day was followed by an equally enjoyable evening spent in the wonderful Braunschweig Christmas market and dinner in a local restaurant. I left in the morning after another memorable trip to Grotrian-Steinweg having helped to select the most beautiful instrument, a trip that will live long in our memories.

I must also mention that we delivered another 192 Grotrian to a local customer in December, Konrad had personally selected this one after discussing the qualities that I felt would best suit the pianist. I visited the piano after its arrival in the home and was immediately smitten with the piano. Just a few notes delivered such an emotional reaction, something that I witness with Grotrian pianos many times over. I did intend to quickly run over the tuning at this visit, as Emma went out I used the time instead to play. I returned to tune it this week!!

The run up to Christmas also saw a large demand for Kawai upright pianos. I don’t think Neil at Kawai could quite believe the amount of orders coming through, his staff had their work cut out to get the pianos prepared ready for dispatch to dealers around the country. We always go through the preparation of our pianos before they leave our showroom but Kawai do an excellent job their end and invest much time and effort to get the pianos to us in a well tuned and regulated condition. I am constantly impressed by the service and support that Kawai give us, Neil in particular, will always ‘go the extra mile’ to support our business. Our most popular model at the moment is the K300 which offers an outstanding performance at an affordable price, always a winning combination! I have to add also that the GX1 and GX2 Kawai grands that we have in the showroom are fantastic pianos!

As we look forward to 2016 our priority is to invite as many people as possible into our showrooms to meet us and play our pianos. The Grotrian-Steinweg philosophy is ‘ boys make fine pianos and the rest will take care of itself’ which demonstrates a genuine belief in the beauty of their pianos. I am so enthusiastic and confident in the quality of our range of pianos that my message is ‘come and play our pianos’, I believe the rest will take care of itself.!

Showroom visitors most welcome, coffee bean grinder has been a big success.

All the best.

Ben

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