Some more information about the Knabe legacy:
The Knabe piano company has been called "The Steinway of the South," and its pianos boasted ownership by many famous people, including Francis Scott Key (author of the National Anthem - his Knabe square grand is on display in the Peabody Hotel in Memphis); Hans van BÃ¼low (son-in-law of Franz Liszt, he said "Knabe pianos have sound and touch more sympathetic to my ears and hands than all others"); Presidents Rutherford B. Hayes, Chester A. Arthur, Woodrow Wilson, Herbert Hoover, and Lyndon Johnson; Albert Einstein; Elvis Presley (his famous white grand was a Knabe); and, of course, many more.
The William Knabe International Piano Competition, however, is focused more on the Knabe family's role in the development of the piano arts in the United States. Not only was William Knabe, an immigrant from Germany, a wonderful craftsman and builder, but we was also fully invested in the dissemination of visual and aural artistry. Before his children and grandchildren were allowed to oversee key aspects of the company, they were first trained in the arts (including music studies in Europe), which helps explain why William Knabe's son Ernest was so willing to invest large sums of money in Tchaikovsky's visit to the United States, and why grandson William Knabe III invested wholeheartedly into the early career of Arthur Rubinstein. Imagine a history of American pianism minus the contribution of Arthur Rubinstein! Without the Knabe family, Rubinstein may never have crossed the Atlantic . . .
Show your appreciation for the Knabe family's contribution to American with your support of Knabe Institute events. Be sure to encourage piano students you know to apply (anyone between the ages of 7 and 25 can send an application video). We are also looking for volunteers to help with our live-round events at the University of Maryland, Baltimore County from June 6-9, 2019. And, of course, we welcome donations. Because we are a 501c3 nonprofit organization, you will receive a letter of charitable contribution that you can use at tax time.