What makes a great piano?
Virtuoso Sergei Rachmaninoff credited Mason & Hamlin pianos for his success in the U.S.A. In 1909, the great pianist Harold Bauer wrote, “Mason and Hamlin pianos represent the most perfect example of the piano maker’s art.” Jazz composer Duke Ellington was a Mason & Hamlin artist.
No less a composer than Maurice Ravel said, “…the Mason & Hamlin pianoforte serves magnificently the composer’s concept by its extensive range in dynamics, as well as quality of tone. It is not short of being a small orchestra.”
Violinist Yehudi Menuhin who owned five Mason & Hamlin grand pianos said, “None compares with the Mason & Hamlin in beauty and grace of tone, or in mellowness and softness and yet in bigness, or in anything that a sensitive and, as it were, human piano should have.”
Of course Mason & Hamlin invests time in every piano it makes. Each Mason & Hamlin piano has no less than a dozen inspections before leaving the factory outside of Boston. Choosing quality over quantity, Mason & Hamlin limits its annual production to 50 uprights and 200 grand pianos.
A major factor in maintaining the rich sounds of a Mason & Hamlin piano over the decades, is the “crown” on the soundboard which enhances the longevity of the piano’s sound longer than any other piano made. Large forces of stress and pressure within the piano cause some pianos to lose their crown over time, dulling the piano’s sound. Richard Gertz, the genius of Mason & Hamlin, solved this problem by developing an exclusive system in 1900. The Crown Retention System incorporates a complex of counter-stresses maintaining the structural integrity of the piano to preserve the original power and tone of all Mason & Hamlin pianos.
You can hear Mason & Hamlin pianos played by the best performers around at Hollywood Piano’s 2018 PianoFest.
Friday, April 27, 7:00pm
Maksim Velichkin has been active as a solo performer, chamber and orchestra musician, both locally and throughout the world.
Friday, May 4, 7:30pm
Sabine Pothier, an award-winning classical pianist who now plays jazz piano.
Friday, May 11, 7:30pm
Brendan White, awarded Outstanding Master’s Graduate of the USC Thornton School of Music. He is making a name for himself in music circles.
Each free event includes a reception and refreshments and goodies, including the commemorative PianoFest 2018 tote bag.
Learn more about the PianoFest lineup at HollywoodPiano.com/pianofest. Hollywood Piano is located at 323 S Front St. in Burbank with a second location at 2084 E Foothill Blvd. in Pasadena. Call (818) 954-8500 to RSVP for upcoming events. Visit HollywoodPiano.com and HollywoodPiano.com/pianofest.