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Worth watching, includes Herbie

Fazioli pianos on CBS Sunday Morning

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Enjoyed that with my Sunday morning coffee. Thanks, Mark!


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very enjoyable, thanks for posting


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Very enjoyable Sunday morning watch!

Just as Fazioli is relatively little known, I keep wondering when more will be heard about the Stuart and Sons pianos, they claim they've advanced a century old way of making pianos for the better.


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Originally Posted by Jonathan Hughes
That link is missing a colon. This one works
Thank you!

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Excellent bit on the program. I didn't realize Fazoli company was only 40 years old and that it took three years to build one. And 200 K WOW you gotta love that piano.

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Wow. What an inspiring story! I've seen plenty of production videos from piano manufacturers over the years, but this one beats them all! It even contains a romantic element or two!


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You beat me to it! I especially appreciated the trek through the cluster of spruce trees, where their ideal wood is sourced. It reminded me of the process of making a Stradivarius, where getting just the right mix of woods, lacquers and fungal decay led to the great tone. It makes a nice counterpoint to the documentary Bright Sparks, about Bob Moog and other legendary synth craftsmen.


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Thanks! New info for me too, I thought also that the company was older than that.

Originally Posted by Keysguy
And 200 K WOW you gotta love that piano.

Yeah, I thought they went for even more than that, actually... Don't some Steinways go for half a mil?

Grand pianos are funny creatures, though. If it doesn't sound or feel right to YOU, the price tag is meaningless. Sometimes I've tested three grand pianos side by side, and preferred the "cheapest" one.

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very nice...thank you!


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I also thought they went for much more than 200K, that seems to be around the "right" price for a super-high-end grand...I think the top Steinways, Yamahas and Shigeru-Kawai don't sell for less...do they?
And I thought the company was younger than 40 years, my reaction was "Wow, have they been around for SO long?"...and I live one hour's drive from them!

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I lived in that party of Italy back in 1977 but didn't realize that particular tree was so crucial to the sound. I wonder if these piano's will change the minds of the Steinway snobs. Some of these smaller companies and even Yamaha are getting into the conservatory game.


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When I asked a Steinway dealer for a price on a new D, it was around $160-170,000 a few years ago. It wasn’t for me, it was for a local orchestra. At one time, Steinway would raise prices by a few % maybe every 2-3 years. Not sure it that holds true.

I thought the comparable Fazioli was more like $250-275,000.

In the CBS story, I loved Herbie’s “Goldielocks” story about picking from 3 pianos. The first was good, the second was better, but the third one is going to make all the women cry. roll

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Mark what dealer did you go through? There isn't anyone here in the city anymore. Hochstein has two of them, my teacher was telling me about it yesterday.


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Originally Posted by Outkaster
Mark what dealer did you go through? There isn't anyone here in the city anymore. Hochstein has two of them, my teacher was telling me about it yesterday.
Denton, Cottier, & Daniels in ER is the Steinway dealer. Nothing came of the inquiry.

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Originally Posted by RandyFF
Very enjoyable Sunday morning watch!

Just as Fazioli is relatively little known, I keep wondering when more will be heard about the Stuart and Sons pianos, they claim they've advanced a century old way of making pianos for the better.

The same could be said for two American piano makers that are relatively young and small: Ravenscroft and David Rubenstein pianos (not David Rubinstein the pianist).

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Originally Posted by RandyFF
Very enjoyable Sunday morning watch!

Just as Fazioli is relatively little known, I keep wondering when more will be heard about the Stuart and Sons pianos, they claim they've advanced a century old way of making pianos for the better.

For the longest time, a Fazioli F228 was my desert island dream. They really don't do the drama of a good Steinway at all. But for improvisation, there is a clarity to complex structures that is very rewarding. The actions are superlative, and the whole line of pianos is just excellent. Recorded, they can be a bit vanilla and bland compared to a good Steinway full of color and drama - but playing on one is very satisfying.

The Stuart and Sons is another level entirely. I've been to factory, spent the day with Wayne Stuart and his family, and had several hours to play the instruments alone. I've written about it here before. You can find my thoughts here. I took along some very nice microphones, etc to capture my experience. I was jet-lagged, tired from work, and the improv is whatever I was feeling that day. That said there are lots of places to hear trained concert pianists play really difficult repertoire on one if that is what one needs to decide an instrument is good.

But the experience I had was superlative. I believe them to be the finest pianos in the world. The extra keys are something one cannot "un-hear" and for any improviser they are immediately useful and welcome. I won't repeat my lengthy write-up linked above, but the pianos do make everything else seem quite pedestrian. The performance envelope is well beyond any standard instrument. Softer, louder, brighter, warmer, higher, lower. Its all there.

If you want to clearly hear what is different about Stuart and Sons pianos, you can go on a comparative tour by following my explorations of a Beethoven Piano Sonata HERE. You can compare a Fazioli, Bosendorfer, Stuart & Sons, Steinway and Paulello (French) all on the same piece of music. The tonal characteristics are very obvious.

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Thanks for the insight into Stuart & Sons..! I hadn’t heard of them before. I’m not a pianist per se, and the more I learn the more I see my own shortcomings but it would be very interesting to try a piano like that. I’ve played big Steinway, Bösendorfers with the extra bass keys, Yamahas, Kawais and even a F228 and they all feel different to me. I’ve settled on an upright, a Bechstein Concert 8 which is wonderful, but I will always dream of a grand piano...

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I'm sure your Bechstein is a delightful instrument. The top European brands make excellent uprights. The Fazioli dealer here in the Bay area also carried Bechstein when I was there last. The grands are excellent. I preferred the Fazioli, but at this price point and level of execution, they are all excellent instruments (and better than any piano I've owned). If they were'nt so large and expensive, I'm quite sure I could rationalize owning several pianos, just like guitarists. "They are all different". Its so true!

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Pierre has a 212 coming in early April. I played a new one he had in late 2019. It was the same piano on display at NAMM 2020. He then sold it a few months afterwards right after everything closed up..

That piano might have had the biggest sound I've ever heard coming from a 7'er.


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Nathanael, who is this Fazioli dealer in the Bay Area? Not that I can afford one (especially while unemployed), but I can dream!


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Mark, it's Piedmont Piano.

https://www.piedmontpiano.com/fazioli


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Oh! Thanks for letting me know. They're the ones that supply the pianos for the SF Symphony, Ballet, and Opera. And they have an annual sale of ones used for rehearsals/etc. when they pull in the new model year. I've never been, but have known about them for decades and have walked past the showroom once or twice way back.

BTW for those who know Oakland fairly well, Piedmont Pianos is right behind the renovated Fox Theatre, where I saw Diana Krall perform a few months before the pandemic broke out. Strange timing on mentioning that concert as well, as I just noticed there's a brand-new (as of today) rumour floating on the internet that she and Elvis Costello just broke up. I highly doubt it's true, but will check into it now.

Last edited by Mark Schmieder; 02/24/21 11:17 PM.

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Originally Posted by Mark Zeger
Originally Posted by Outkaster
Mark what dealer did you go through? There isn't anyone here in the city anymore. Hochstein has two of them, my teacher was telling me about it yesterday.
Denton, Cottier, & Daniels in ER is the Steinway dealer. Nothing came of the inquiry.


Yeah they don't have the line anymore I am pretty sure.


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