Brooklyn-based freelance arts reporter Jeff Lunden (pictured) cranked out a tuneful item today for NPR’s Morning Edition. It was all about the history of piano maker Steinway & Sons and concerns in musician circles that a recent ownership change will affect product quality.
Lunden got assurances that all will remain the same. He also summarized the intricate, old-school process responsible at a factory in Astoria for each Steinway grand:
It takes 11 months to build a Steinway grand, which features 12,000 separate parts. The factory is a beehive of activity. In one area, thin laminates of wood are glued together and put in a press, to create the distinctive form of a grand piano. In another area, so-called belly men, put the sound boards into the case.