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Multiple piano choices @ the 15th Tchaikovsky piano comp.
#2440832 07/12/15 05:11 PM
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phacke Offline OP

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http://tchaikovskycompetition.com/en/news/47.htm

It would have been nice if they had written the models, especially the Kawai and Yamaha. Maybe if one hunts through the images, this would be possible to figure, but I did not.

Nice stable of pianos.

Best wishes-


phacke

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J. S. Bach, Toccata (G minor) BWV 915
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Re: Multiple piano choices @ the 15th Tchaikovsky piano comp.
phacke #2440856 07/12/15 07:19 PM
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http://usa.yamaha.com/products/musical-instruments/keyboards/premium_pianos/cf_series/cfx/

The Yamaha is the rather new model, isn't it? Boxy lyre, swooping cut-out of arms, cheeks, I forget what it's called.

I prefer the Steinway sound, but the non-Steinway players were more interesting to me (as a group). I thought Shishkin and Chen, who played the Shigeru Kawai, should have advanced to round 2.

For the last round of 2 concerti, everybody played Steinway, regardless of earlier choices, interestingly.


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Re: Multiple piano choices @ the 15th Tchaikovsky piano comp.
phacke #2441022 07/13/15 11:39 AM
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I'm rather surprised that only 3 chose the Fazioli. Then again, Pete Sampras probably never picked up a new/different racket before a U.S. Open match. No one at the (piano) event isn't familiar with what Steinways do and how to get the sounds they want out of them. At the same time, and following the same conservative path, it may also be that the competitors assume that the judges are looking for how these pieces sound on Steinway?

I don't really follow piano celebrities. As far as that limited perspective allows, it seems to me that Glenn Gould was one of the few players with a truly unique touch and phrasing on the piano to achieve worldwide acclaim. I wonder, did he do any of these competitions?

Kurt


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Re: Multiple piano choices @ the 15th Tchaikovsky piano comp.
WhoDwaldi #2441026 07/13/15 11:52 AM
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Originally Posted by WhoDwaldi
http://usa.yamaha.com/products/musical-instruments/keyboards/premium_pianos/cf_series/cfx/

The Yamaha is the rather new model, isn't it? Boxy lyre, swooping cut-out of arms, cheeks, I forget what it's called.


It's just the CFX. Very nice piano.

As an aside, I notice they are still trotting out this baloney: "Yamaha specifically seasons this piano for the U.S. market." I wonder which part of the US that would be? Florida? Alaska? Somewhere in between? Same baloney when they say it for Australia. Compare Darwin with Hobart and you can't consider them to be the same country in weather terms.

Re: Multiple piano choices @ the 15th Tchaikovsky piano comp.
ando #2441040 07/13/15 12:32 PM
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Originally Posted by ando
As an aside, I notice they are still trotting out this baloney: "Yamaha specifically seasons this piano for the U.S. market." I wonder which part of the US that would be? Florida? Alaska? Somewhere in between? Same baloney when they say it for Australia. Compare Darwin with Hobart and you can't consider them to be the same country in weather terms.
It may not be baloney. Perhaps Yamaha seasons the piano for the U.S. location that requires the most seasoning(the location that has the greatest humidity swings)?

Re: Multiple piano choices @ the 15th Tchaikovsky piano comp.
phacke #2441045 07/13/15 12:45 PM
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Originally Posted by phacke
http://tchaikovskycompetition.com/en/news/47.htm

It would have been nice if they had written the models, especially the Kawai and Yamaha. Maybe if one hunts through the images, this would be possible to figure, but I did not.

Nice stable of pianos.

Best wishes-

I preferred the sound of the non-Steinway pianos in the competition. They have distinctive characters. I believe that in the finals, it was not possible to keep switching pianos like they did in the earlier (solo and chamber) rounds because of the huge orchestra, so everyone had to play the Steinway, which is a pity for two of the finalists.

For instance, the Frenchman (who became the talk of the competition) coaxed a wonderful array of colors from the CFX in Gaspard de la nuit, which he wasn't quite able to reproduce on the Steinway, when he repeated Scarbo in the Winners' Gala concert.

The pianos in rounds 1 & 2 were the respective manufacturers' concert grands - F278, SK-EX and CFX.


"I don't play accurately - anyone can play accurately - but I play with wonderful expression. As far as the piano is concerned, sentiment is my forte. I keep science for Life."
Re: Multiple piano choices @ the 15th Tchaikovsky piano comp.
phacke #2441047 07/13/15 12:52 PM
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Some performances that show off the pianos well . . .


Dmitry Shishkin—Kawai

http://tch15.medici.tv/en/performance/piano-1er-tour

Sergey Redkin—Yamaha

http://tch15.medici.tv/en/performance/round-1-piano-june-16-1250

Dinara Klinton—Steinway

http://tch15.medici.tv/en/performance/round-round-1-piano-2015-06-20-1400000300-great-ha

Andrey Dubov—Fazioli

http://tch15.medici.tv/en/performance/round-round-1-piano-2015-06-17-2100000300-great-ha


BTW, Gold—Dmitry Masleev (Russia), Silver--George Li (USA) & Lukas Geniušas (Russia)
Competition can be replayed on medici.tv .


WhoDwaldi
Howard (by Kawai) 5' 10"
Re: Multiple piano choices @ the 15th Tchaikovsky piano comp.
pianoloverus #2441051 07/13/15 12:58 PM
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Originally Posted by pianoloverus
Originally Posted by ando
As an aside, I notice they are still trotting out this baloney: "Yamaha specifically seasons this piano for the U.S. market." I wonder which part of the US that would be? Florida? Alaska? Somewhere in between? Same baloney when they say it for Australia. Compare Darwin with Hobart and you can't consider them to be the same country in weather terms.
It may not be baloney. Perhaps Yamaha seasons the piano for the U.S. location that requires the most seasoning(the location that has the greatest humidity swings)?


If this location has the huge humidity swings, there is no way to season for it. And if it's targeted at some sort of average humidity, how does that help a buyer in Florida, Arizona, Washington, Alaska, wherever? They season their wood for medium humidity (like every other piano maker) and from there it's up to the owner to treat the environment to look after the piano. If Yamaha were serious about this stuff, they would release their pianos as specific models with specific humidity targets. At least then it would look like they actually understood how much big countries like the US and Australia can vary in climate. It's marketing gibberish. Weapons-grade balonium.

Re: Multiple piano choices @ the 15th Tchaikovsky piano comp.
ando #2441067 07/13/15 01:39 PM
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Originally Posted by ando
If Yamaha were serious about this stuff, they would release their pianos as specific models with specific humidity targets. At least then it would look like they actually understood how much big countries like the US and Australia can vary in climate. It's marketing gibberish. Weapons-grade balonium.


When I last looked into it, Yamaha offered three different wood moisture levels: normal, dry, and superdry. The choice was not left to the end-user, but assigned to the particular regional market, e.g. dry for Europe and superdry for North America.

Kawai's position was that based on its own extensive research into wood preparation, it had found one optimal wood moisture standard that worked best for all situations.

European makers were willing to customize special orders for tropicalization, but that process involved extra expense and had as much to do with the fasteners holding wood parts as the wood parts themselves.

Regarding the competition, it is often stated by critics of Steinway that the choice of many if not most young classical artists to practice their craft on Steinway pianos is largely based on Steinway's near monopoly on the concert stages where these young artists hope one day to work.

If it is true as reported that those who survive the initial round of competition will then have no choice but to continue on a Steinway, then the same argument may apply.

It's hard to swallow the idea that in the piano option business on the international classical competition circuit, there is no monkey business and no money changes hands.


Will Johnny Come Marching Home?
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Re: Multiple piano choices @ the 15th Tchaikovsky piano comp.
turandot #2441089 07/13/15 02:29 PM
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Originally Posted by turandot
Originally Posted by ando
If Yamaha were serious about this stuff, they would release their pianos as specific models with specific humidity targets. At least then it would look like they actually understood how much big countries like the US and Australia can vary in climate. It's marketing gibberish. Weapons-grade balonium.


When I last looked into it, Yamaha offered three different wood moisture levels: normal, dry, and superdry. The choice was not left to the end-user, but assigned to the particular regional market, e.g. dry for Europe and superdry for North America.


Yamaha claims to do the same for Australia. But if you send even a "normal" piano to the tropical north of Australia, it's not going to work. People are forced to use constant de-humidification/air-conditioning, or endure constant adjustments to their piano until it adjusts to the local climate. Australia is everything from superdry to superwet.

Re: Multiple piano choices @ the 15th Tchaikovsky piano comp.
ando #2441105 07/13/15 03:35 PM
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Originally Posted by ando
if you send even a "normal" piano to the tropical north of Australia, it's not going to work. People are forced to use constant de-humidification/air-conditioning, or endure constant adjustments to their piano until it adjusts to the local climate.


That must be why the competition circuit doesn't have a stop in Darwin. grin


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Re: Multiple piano choices @ the 15th Tchaikovsky piano comp.
phacke #2441118 07/13/15 04:21 PM
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While it is nice to see some breadth of choice, there are some brands that surely should have been there but weren't. I did not see Bosendorfer, Mason & Hamlin, or Schimmel listed, nor Bluthner nor Seiler either. And did the Steinway choices include Hamburg Steinway?

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Re: Multiple piano choices @ the 15th Tchaikovsky piano comp.
phacke #2441155 07/13/15 05:54 PM
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The Steinway is from Hamburg...
All these grands (and of course all their pianists) are GREAT!!

Re: Multiple piano choices @ the 15th Tchaikovsky piano comp.
lluiscl #2441173 07/13/15 06:41 PM
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I've just received an e-mail from medici.tv that the Tchaikovsky Competition 2015 has had over 9 million views so far, the largest for any classical event, ever.

Hopefully, a few of those 9 million now realize that there are concert grands that aren't made by Steinway, and that (amazingly) some pianists actually prefer Fazioli, Yamaha or Kawai...... thumb


"I don't play accurately - anyone can play accurately - but I play with wonderful expression. As far as the piano is concerned, sentiment is my forte. I keep science for Life."
Re: Multiple piano choices @ the 15th Tchaikovsky piano comp.
pianoloverus #2441239 07/13/15 11:21 PM
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Originally Posted by pianoloverus
Originally Posted by ando
As an aside, I notice they are still trotting out this baloney: "Yamaha specifically seasons this piano for the U.S. market." I wonder which part of the US that would be? Florida? Alaska? Somewhere in between? Same baloney when they say it for Australia. Compare Darwin with Hobart and you can't consider them to be the same country in weather terms.
It may not be baloney. Perhaps Yamaha seasons the piano for the U.S. location that requires the most seasoning(the location that has the greatest humidity swings)?


No other manufacturer trots out this spiel. Likewise, in five years of living in the violin family world, I never heard "seasoned for destination". Besides, once wood gets to its new home it simply starts re-seasoning for wherever it is no matter how much it was or wasn't seasoned somewhere else. When the grey market started blowing up in the 80's and early nineties, the main selling stock was still 60's and 70's pianos. Tony Hahm, who helped invent the grey market told me that those early pianos simply weren't dried enough to begin with while at the same time, it didn't stop those grey market pianos from being a significant competitor for Yamaha's NEW pianos. Et Voila! We solve both problems. We explain away the pianos that cracked and seperated when not in Hamamatsu's maritime climate and we spread some good old fashioned FUD against our competitors even if they do carry the same name.

It's been said here that Yamaha is brokering it's own used pianos. I can't aver that this is true only that a dealer said it was so. If it is true, where are those pianos seasoned for? Do they know they're going to Poughkeepsie or that they will live a peaceful life in a house by the beach in Perth?

Kurt


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Re: Multiple piano choices @ the 15th Tchaikovsky piano comp.
KurtZ #2441274 07/14/15 03:01 AM
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Originally Posted by KurtZ
Originally Posted by pianoloverus
Originally Posted by ando
As an aside, I notice they are still trotting out this baloney: "Yamaha specifically seasons this piano for the U.S. market." I wonder which part of the US that would be? Florida? Alaska? Somewhere in between? Same baloney when they say it for Australia. Compare Darwin with Hobart and you can't consider them to be the same country in weather terms.
It may not be baloney. Perhaps Yamaha seasons the piano for the U.S. location that requires the most seasoning(the location that has the greatest humidity swings)?


No other manufacturer trots out this spiel. Likewise, in five years of living in the violin family world, I never heard "seasoned for destination". Besides, once wood gets to its new home it simply starts re-seasoning for wherever it is no matter how much it was or wasn't seasoned somewhere else. When the grey market started blowing up in the 80's and early nineties, the main selling stock was still 60's and 70's pianos. Tony Hahm, who helped invent the grey market told me that those early pianos simply weren't dried enough to begin with while at the same time, it didn't stop those grey market pianos from being a significant competitor for Yamaha's NEW pianos. Et Voila! We solve both problems. We explain away the pianos that cracked and seperated when not in Hamamatsu's maritime climate and we spread some good old fashioned FUD against our competitors even if they do carry the same name.

It's been said here that Yamaha is brokering it's own used pianos. I can't aver that this is true only that a dealer said it was so. If it is true, where are those pianos seasoned for? Do they know they're going to Poughkeepsie or that they will live a peaceful life in a house by the beach in Perth?

Kurt


Plover's post is factually correct. Of it three levels of moisture content, Yamaha designates superdry for the North American market. The moisture content percentages of superdry, dry, and normal are not a secret. If you'd prefer facts to rants, you can simply write to Yamaha and ask for the percentages. You can also ask about whether Yamaha seasons the pianos that it reconditions and sells. Obviously, it does not because reconditioning a piano does not involve replacing the wood. But Yamaha will tell you that it only chooses the best candidates for reconditioning.

Tony Hahm did not help to invent the grey market. He buys and sells a lot of grey market pianos, and of course, his are the picks of the litter, just as all the ones that other retailers buy and sell are the picks of the litter, and the ones that Yamaha chooses for reconditioning are the picks of the litter too. It's a large litter.

Violins are not pianos.

The original thread topic is interesting. It deserves better than off-topic rants flailing in the dark.


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Re: Multiple piano choices @ the 15th Tchaikovsky piano comp.
ando #2441276 07/14/15 03:21 AM
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Originally Posted by ando
...
Yamaha claims to do the same for Australia. But if you send even a "normal" piano to the tropical north of Australia, it's not going to work. People are forced to use constant de-humidification/air-conditioning, or endure constant adjustments to their piano until it adjusts to the local climate. Australia is everything from superdry to superwet.


I can vouch for the YAMAHA in Far North Australia - where humidity of 99% is not unusual. And it was before the days of air-conditioning in homes.

We were in Atherton (not so hot, but very humid - walls and ceilings go mouldy while you watch) for 5 yrs with my new UX. The technician came from Cairns (hot and humid) commented that YAMAHA was about the only brand (he said KAWAI was OK too) which coped with the humidity in the tropics. In that time, I only had one note which got a bit sticky, but a minor adjustment and it came good. My previous (old) upright had continually had sticking notes, despite a dehumidifier inside), as did most other pianos I knew.

The UX was unpacked on my back lawn direct from YAMAHA in Japan, and never looked back.


Alan from Queensland, Australia (and Clara - my Grotrian Concert & Allen Organ (CF-17a)).
Re: Multiple piano choices @ the 15th Tchaikovsky piano comp.
backto_study_piano #2441325 07/14/15 09:55 AM
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Originally Posted by backto_study_piano
Originally Posted by ando
...
Yamaha claims to do the same for Australia. But if you send even a "normal" piano to the tropical north of Australia, it's not going to work. People are forced to use constant de-humidification/air-conditioning, or endure constant adjustments to their piano until it adjusts to the local climate. Australia is everything from superdry to superwet.


I can vouch for the YAMAHA in Far North Australia - where humidity of 99% is not unusual. And it was before the days of air-conditioning in homes.

We were in Atherton (not so hot, but very humid - walls and ceilings go mouldy while you watch) for 5 yrs with my new UX. The technician came from Cairns (hot and humid) commented that YAMAHA was about the only brand (he said KAWAI was OK too) which coped with the humidity in the tropics. In that time, I only had one note which got a bit sticky, but a minor adjustment and it came good. My previous (old) upright had continually had sticking notes, despite a dehumidifier inside), as did most other pianos I knew.

The UX was unpacked on my back lawn direct from YAMAHA in Japan, and never looked back.


This story is all the more amusing because Australia is another one of those "dry" continents for which Yamaha seasons its wood. The fact is, what you need in any climate is a really well made piano - which Yamaha undoubtedly is. I have one myself - it copes with anything I throw at it. I'm surprised Yamaha doesn't make a super-humid model. Plenty of places in the world could be described that way.


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