Welcome to what has become a rare update! I usually make reference to my intention of producing the updates more regularly, I make that pledge once again! The difference this time is that I have recently made the commitment to allow more time for admin tasks! There is always so much to do that the updates don’t always get priority, the same can be said of our Facebook page, you may have noticed more regular posts recently. I have a similar situation with the tuning of my own piano, when it was last due I booked Vicky to do it for me, and an excellent job she did too!
The last update was way back in January, in truth it has been a quieter year at the showroom. The piano trade in general has been very quiet with personal expenditure affected by the economic situation and increased cost of living. I am thankful that we have been able to tread water and pleased to report a recent increase in activity and pianos selected from the showroom. Michelle and I both miss the buzz of the showroom when it is quieter and have been positively skipping into Autumn with some wonderful visitors recently. When things are quieter it gives the opportunity to look at things like the website, which is having a bit of a refresh, Facebook and connections with music teachers. We recently hosted a workshop run by Jonathan Luff from Winchester, we had great fun sharing our pianos with his students and were reminded of how much we enjoy these events.
The most exciting news this year comes from our visit to the Wilh. Steinberg factory in Eisenberg. What a wonderful trip Michelle and I had, we returned inspired by the people and the pianos. Ina Lehman, the managing director of Wilh. Steinberg, joined the company at sixteen years of age in a secretarial role, she now runs the company. She is the most genuine, hard working and honest person you could wish to meet and her passion for the company is reflected in everything that they do. With our friend Konrad Blumberg at her side they are a formidable team producing exceptional pianos, we are proud to be presenting these fine pianos in our showroom.
One of the joys of an acoustic pianos is the individual nature of each one. This is something that never fails to amaze visitors to the showroom, it is our job to explain this and help to find a piano that the player connects with. Every piano has unique materials, final voicing is carried out by hand and the way someone plays the piano will alter the tone. It is all of these variables that make the discovery of a piano that you connect with so very special. The only way to do this is to sit at pianos and experience them, to find the voice and performance that will inspire musical creativity thus making the experience of playing the most enjoyable one. We increasingly have visitors who read information online that has little relevance when they sit in front of the pianos. I recently enjoyed a visit from a chap who came in to buy a small grand piano, he had read that a certain part of this model created a great tone. After telling me this I asked him if he liked the tone, he didn’t! The successful selection of a piano is a personal thing, it is a wonderful thing, something to be explored and discovered, giving guidance in this search with a variety of pianos to experience is what we do.
Having written a few lines I am feeling pretty smug, sat here with a coffee as the sun streams in through the window, Sharad will be pleased that I have finally got round to it. The next update will not be too far off, the problem with leaving it so long is that I forget the news! I could have written a whole update on the Wilh. Steinberg factory visit but a taster is enough, I always enjoy talking through the discoveries of the visit over a coffee in the showroom. My commitment to give more time for the business means that every Friday I am either at the showroom or carrying out admin tasks. I am always pleased to share a coffee with customers, old and new, just call ahead of visiting to make sure we are not hosting an appointment. If there are any piano teachers that would like to arrange a visit with their students either contact me or Michelle and we plan it together. Keep an eye on our Facebook page, I am going to start adding content myself which I have never done before!
Enjoy the wonderful season of Autumn, I must resurrect my version of ‘Autumn Leaves’ once again!
All the best,
07778 569839 | www.benwheelerpianos.co.uk