Many changes are on the horizon for students as Missouri State continues its push to overhaul the facilities and accommodations the music department offers. The Steinway Initiative is key to that plan.
What does it mean to be an All-Steinway School?
The Steinway Initiative will pave the way for Missouri State to become an All-Steinway school, a prestigious designation given to those institutions that only carry Steinway & Sons pianos.
This will ensure that music students will have the best pianos at their fingertips to learn and practice. It is an endeavor supported by the university, the Missouri State University Foundation, the College of Arts and Letters and the music department.
How are we able to purchase the pianos?
Music students’ lesson fees have already purchased 10 Steinway-built Boston upright pianos and one Boston 7-foot grand. And thanks to a generous gift by Sam Hamra, chairman of Hamra Enterprises, the university recently purchased its first new Steinway grand piano.
“Mr. Hamra’s generosity will provide the industry standard in grand pianos for not just our piano majors to perform on,” said Dr. Julie Combs, head of the music department. “Every music student who performs a junior degree recital or takes part in a master class will also be accompanied by this instrument.”
Combs said an estate gift this year from Al and Rosemond Clapp will also help secure the All-Steinway designation: “They love their Steinway grand piano and want to be sure it is re-homed at a later time.”
Why do we want Steinway?
Combs said becoming an All-Steinway School demonstrates MSU’s dedication to making certain students have the opportunity to learn on the gold standard of instruments. This will help in recruiting efforts, as well.
“Great teachers, facilities, and equipment are major factors in students choosing a music school,” she said. “We have the great teachers; our facilities are going to be renovated, and we are aiming to replace our piano inventory. These steps will help with our recruiting and retention and move the MSU music department to a new and higher level.”
Where can I learn more and play a Steinway?
You can learn more about Steinway’s hand-crafted pianos by playing one and hearing the story of its creation. Come to our exhibition on Sept. 17 and 18. There, you’ll watch a short film to see a Steinway piano disassembled and hear the story of its quality and creation told. You will also be able to play the Steinway L1037 piano.
Piece by Piece: The Secrets of Steinway Exhibition
Date: Sept. 17 & 18
Time: 2 – 4 p.m.
Location: Wehr Band Hall