How many pianos are still being made in Europe?

The head of Blüthner, Christian Blüthner-Haessler, reckons about 11,000 in Germany, down from 40,000 in the 1990s.

The only other countries where piano making is still alive are Austria with Bösendorfer and Italy with Fazioli.

In France, Pleyel has shut down. Steinway have yet to clarify plans under new owners. The rest of the industry is in China. Interesting interview here (auf Deutsch).

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  • Depressing to realize, that around the fin de siècle before WWI there were 200,000 pianos made every year in Germany (then about 60 mio. citizens) alone. On the other hand, the quality was high in the last decades, so an estimated 800,000 pianos are in German households in playable condition today. That’s about one piano for every 50th household. That means in school about every other class no kid has a piano at home.

    • The article says 8 million pianos in German households, from where did you get 800,000 in playable condition?

      • Sorry, my mistake, thanks for correcting. But 8 million including institutions, not households only. But still a much better number.

  • Don’t forget John Broadwood and Sons http://www.broadwood.co.uk/. They are a small but very active presence based at Finchcocks Musical Museum, near Goudhurst in Kent. Despite regular press rumours to the contrary, they’ve never been out of business. The company is now run by Dr Alastair Laurence and is doing very well!

    • When I moved to Hamburg, Germany in 1976, I had $12,000 from an inheritance (my father passed away in 1967) to spend on a piano. I played on a very nice Petrof at the local dealership, but eventually decided to buy a Steinway B grand instead. At the time, my $12,000 were worth approx. DM 25,000 which was the retail price of a new Steinway B grand piano.

      It was a very tough decision, but in retrospect I am glad that I bought the Steinway! And I still have it. Replaced the hammers, shanks and upper two registers of strings abt. 15 years ago. Today, I could sell it for approx. €30,000 – €40,000 with no problem.

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