January 26, 2016 The NAMM show is always an exciting show. NAMM (the National Association of Music Merchants) contains everything related to the business of music. If you’re a music teacher, musician, technician, sound man… every imaginable product is represented. Above and beyond the displays, there are workshops, concerts, demonstrations and specials happening for the full 4 days. It’s hard not to be excited with the buzz of almost 100,000 visitors all interested in something musical. Invariably there’s always one piece that stands out in the crowd. Without question this year’s prize went to Bosendorfer for the remarkable vision combining piano making with bronze sculpting at the hands of Franco Castelluccio. Better images can be found on the Bösendorfer website and you can also see the making of this extraordinary piece. In keeping with the theme on visuals, Pearl River has come out with a clever way of customizing upright pianos. The Panda upright pictured is actually a type of almost vinyl application on top of the white backdrop. Discussing this great idea with one of the Pearl River representatives, the overlays and background colors can both be customized ~ a simple yet effective concept. The possibilities are limitless for interior designers. The Panda, one of China’s national treasures, is featured in the zoo at Guangzhou, the same location as the Pearl River Piano Company. I couldn’t help but take notice to the small display of Charles Walter pianos. Their furniture pianos are detailed meticulously and show the hand rubbed lacquer beautifully. I’ve never had the opportunity to meet Mr. & Mrs. Walter before and we chatted for quite some time. I asked them to reminisce of their early days starting a piano company and it wasn’t long before we heard stories of the challenges raising both a family and building this piano manufacturing business. They truly are living legends and build very fine American-made pianos.NAMM is a fantastic event to discover the piano. It’s a place to sit down and try out different instruments – to put aside pre-conceived ideas about brands, companies or country of origin and simply… play. You can try various uprights and grand pianos and feel how the keys respond – what tones are pleasing to your ears and view examples of fine cabinetry. This year on Piano Price Point, I decided to give the virtual tour version of the NAMM show. You can try looking around for yourself. While you can’t play the pianos on the virtual tour, it will give you a glimpse of what’s available. Below is a picture of the NAMM entrance at the Anaheim Convention Center. Simply click and hold your mouse button anywhere on the background of the picture (or on touch screen, press down anywhere) and then move the pointer in the direction you would like to see (while holding down). You should be able to see the scene move as if you are standing there. Click the location arrows (found just above descriptives) to move to the next location. The purpose of this tour is to give a brief glimpse into what it’s like being at the show. Although I included a few scenes from the main floor, the pianos are located on the 2nd and 3rd floors. The main floor exhibits go on for miles. Some of the images aren’t clear due to constant traffic movement and close quarters but it will give you the perception of what the show is like. Loading... In attendance this year were Baldwin, Bösendorfer, Brodmann, Charles Walter, Geyer, Hallet Davis, Hailun, Hardman, JF Hessen, Kawai, Kingsburg, Mason & Hamlin, Ottomeister, Pearl River, Perzina, Pramberger, Ravenscroft, Rönisch, Samick, Schultze Pollmann, Seiler, Story & Clark, Yamaha and Young Chang. Did you like the VIRTUAL TOUR? You can now visit INSIDE a piano factory. Hailun was the first to open the doors for Piano Price Point. You can visit that HERE. Petrof, from Czech Republic will be the next tour released (within weeks) followed by Sauter, in Germany so stay tuned to be able to see these virtual tours to see how pianos are made behind the scenes. Enjoy!