Sanctuary Grand Piano

 

Contact Info

First Presbyterian Church Bloomsburg
345 Market Street
Bloomsburg, PA  17815

Email: fpcbloom@verizon.net

Telephone: 570-784-2322
 

Sanctuary Grand Piano

The Howard Macauly family generously donated a truly fine piano to the church, decease a Bluthner Model 2 Concert Grand in 2008, store hand built in Leipzig, Germany. It is used nearly every Sunday, and has attracted several musical groups, professional recitalists, and many Bloomsburg University Music Department events to regularly take advantage of it and the Sanctuary's fine acoustic.
 

Technical details of the Bluthner's unique construction:

Bluthner Piano


Bluthner pianos have been at the pinnacle of the fine art of piano making for over one hundred and fifty years. Their uniquely pure, warm, and expressive character, and their remarkably responsive actions have made them the first choice of many of the world's great composers and pianists
Debussy, Prokofiev, Shostakovich, Tchaikovsky and Rachmaninoff, among others, composed their music on Bluthner pianos and each had his own personal Bluthner in his home.

The tone of the Bluthner is so rich and expressive that it is often compared to the human voice. Perhaps this is why many singers and musicians choose it for their private use and for recording. Marlene Dietrich owned a Bluthner, as did the Beatles, who composed on a Bluthner, recorded with a Bluthner, and even featured it on the cover of their album "Let it be". Andrew Lloyd Weber owns several Bluthners that continue to inspire him to create the remarkable compositions for his musicals.

The Bluthner is also the piano of choice for the renowned modern-day classical pianists Mikhail Pletniev and Arturo Pizzaro.

The unique playing and listening experience provided by Bluthner piano is a direct result of the distinct Bluthner method of piano building and of the unique Bluthner design. Bluthner's commitment to use only the highest-grade parts and materials, un-compromised craftsmanship, the keenest attention to details and the highest level of quality control guarantees that each piano that it builds will produce the unique and beautiful Bluthner sound.

Bluthner pianos are also known for their graceful and exquisite looks. From the beautifully designed and finished plates, through the unique custom wood finishes and artistic veneers, the Bluthner objective for perfection is always evident.

The president of the Bluthner piano company, Dr Christian Bluthner, is the fifth generation descendent of Julius Bluthner, the company's founder; he is part of an unbroken line that extends one hundred and fifty years. It is a line that has allowed the Bluthner family to continuously maintain complete control over the production and development of its pianos and that has enabled them to consistently produce the highest-level instruments. A Bluthner family member has always been at the helm of the company and Bluthner has always been a family-owned and operated business. As such, the Bluthner family takes unequaled pride in each and every instrument that bears its name and is committed to assuring that each and every one of its pianos not only delivers the signature Bluthner sound, but also satisfies the highest expectations of the most discerning individual.

Bluthner Model 2 Concert Grand Piano Specifications

Measurements
length: 7'8", width : 5'4", height: 39 3/4" , weight: 847 pounds
Rim Construction and Bracing
The outer rim is made in two halves using up to 7 layers of veneers, laminated crosswise with water resistant glue.

The inner rim is laminated of at least 14 layers of select beech. These parts are carefully stored until a uniform moisture content of 8% plus/minus 1.5% is reached. The thickness of the inner rim is 40 mm to 46 mm, the thickness of the outer rim is 22 mm to 27 mm according to the size of the instrument.

The rim braces are glued in three layers, two of which on the outside are made of first class pine and the one in the middle is made of red beech for extra stability. One end of each brace is mortised into the inner rim, the opposite end of each brace is fitted into the back rail. To further secure the braces and rim, the braces are screwed to the rim and keybed and consoles are glued and screwed to the rim.

The Model 2 has five lengthwise braces and a crosswise brace made of red beech, 40 mm (1 1/2") thick, mortised and glued to the braces.

Pinblock
Extra select red beech cut into layers of 2 mm is glued crosswise together in 16 layers using water resistant glue, reinforced with a layer of quarter-sawn red beech. The thickness of the pinblock is 36 mm.

Soundboard and Ribs
The soundboard is made of clear, quarter-sawn solid spruce. It is varied in thickness by reason of acoustical design. Careful manufacturing assures the greatest responsiveness due to an optimal ratio of elasticity to density.

The ribs are also of select quarter-sawn spruce, graduated in width and thickness and feathered for flexibility and frequency response. The Model 2 has 13 ribs. The ribs are mortised into the inner rim and glued to the soundboard with water resistant glue. The whole soundboard is coated with a special kind of varnish.

Only fine grained, white, well seasoned spruce which originates from the Eastern Alpine regions is used in the production of Bluthner soundboards and ribs.

Bridges
The bridges of a Bluthner grand piano are handmade of solid maple, with a reinforcement in the treble, fitted with transmitting bridges where necessary. They are carved and fitted with bridge pins made of steel.

Strings
The treble strings and the core wire are of highest grade, strong, elastic steel wire. The high precision in production avoids differences in diameters, which ensures a clear tone without any falseness. The wrappings of the bass strings are of solid copper, the core of hexagonal diameter.

String Plate, Tuning Pins and Aliquot System
The string plate is cast in special iron which can support high tensions but it has also a damping effect, remaining inert to string vibrations. Its form is carefully calculated and specially designed for each model. The firm's name is cast into each plate. All agraffes are of brass and threaded securely into the plate.

Chromium-plated tuning pins of special steel, multiple threaded, are used.

A fourth string for every note in the treble section, which runs parallel to the normal strings, passes over the bridge but is elevated where the hammer strikes. This string picks up the vibrations sympathetically and enhances the overtone spectrum of the instrument.

Action and Hammers
The action is made by Renner according to measurements provided by Bluthner. This insures a smooth and fluid touch.

All parts are made of select sound hardwood, free from imperfections. All critical action felts and cloths are made of 100% wool, with manufacturers moth-resistant treatment, and are equal to the highest felt and cloth standards. Center pins are of nickel silver. All center-pin bushing material is pre-shrunk. The actions of all Bluthner grand pianos are designed and thoroughly tested for optimum performance and longevity.

The hammers are a fundamental part of the instrument which contribute substantially to the unique Bluthner sound. Crafted from the finest felt, arched over a core of walnut wood and individually voiced to perfection, the distinctive Bluthner hammers stimulate the purest vibrations of the strings.

Keys and Keybed
All 88 keys are made of spruce. The sharps are made of ebony and the white keys are covered with acrylic. It is also important that sensitive key balancing is performed to exacting specifications that ensure ease of repetition and control.

For the keybed, select spruce is glued together in several layers to a total thickness of 42 mm to 45 mm, depending on the size of the instrument. Red beech is inserted where the attachments of the legs are situated.

Pedals, Casters and Hardware
All grands are equipped with three pedals of solid brass. They serve for shifting the keyboard, sostenuto, and sustaining.

The concert grand casters have a swivel stem and special double wheels on brass bearings, with a locking mechanism included. All external hardware is of solid brass.

Seasoning and Settling of Piano and Action
The pianos are placed under moderately fluctuating temperature and moisture conditions until the various elements season and settle into a stress-balanced piano unit.

Fallboard and Lid
The fallboard is of 12-ply construction with a core made of pine. The lid is made of several layers of veneer, cross-banded, and with hard maple as the final covering.

Finish
Cases receive multiple coats of lacquer, and are then rubbed and polished by hand.

Information courtesy of Allegro Pianos and the Bluthner Piano Company.