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Choice of Pianos at the Chopin International (Read 2648 times)

Offline irrational

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Choice of Pianos at the Chopin International
« on: October 12, 2015, 02:53:17 PM »
I have found the piano choices fairly curious and also having listened to many performances I found I had some questions. Its hard to find records of pianos chosen in other top international competitions for comparison.

Performers in the Chopin chose Steinway or Yamaha almost exclusively (Only 1 chose Fazioli), despite Kawaii and Fazioli also being there (I am not sure who else).
To my ear the Steinway has the richer sound, the Yamaha the clearer sound. I know Bosendorfer stopped providing when in a previous competition only 1 person chose them. Even though Bosendorfer is now owned by Yamaha?

In any case. I had 2 thoughts.

1: Perhaps, like most people, the rarity of Fazioli and Bosendorfer compared to the common availability of Steinway and Yamaha means that even pianists are more attuned to the sounds of the more common pianos. So they may not choose slightly different but arguably as good or better (in touch and/or sound) pianos because they sound different?

2: Or would Fazioli and Bosendorfer not be suited to Chopin? I find my own Bosey very hard to master, but more rewarding when the playing is correct. Chopin I find especially hard to make sound right (perhaps because I too, am used to Steinway's sound?). My skill is also not great so I don't aways know what to do to get a specific sound. Does anyone have experience playing at top level on the different pianos to compare the pianos' suitability to different composers?

Or any other ideas to provoke thought?

Offline visitor

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Re: Choice of Pianos at the Chopin International
«Reply #1 on: October 12, 2015, 05:13:09 PM »
I think it's a calculated business/professional move  in a lot of ways.  If said pianist plays on and wins on a Steinway, they have the chance to sign on as a Steinway artist (they have their own label, PR firms, venue contacts, etc.), and it opens doors for them in some of the biggest markets.

Same with Yamaha.

The others are niche brands, rare, fantastic instrument but don't have the vast commercial marketing machine and market penetration as the others, so for launching a career it's probably not as attractive.

If pianist is already signed on and has lucrative deals elsewhere, so long as there is non agreement not to use any piano other than 'x' then they might have more liberty to do so.

Offline irrational

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Re: Choice of Pianos at the Chopin International
«Reply #2 on: October 13, 2015, 08:38:32 AM »
Oh that's a valid point!
I did not consider the fact that the pianists are obviously also looking for good employment. 8)