SHS’s hidden treasure

A professional grade piano is in the hands of the music department


A Steinway Model D piano is a hidden treasure from the music department. The piano has gone up in to around $150,000 in value.

Located at SHS, there is a professional grade piano in the school’s care. This model of instrument has been known to be used in professional concerts all around the world. It is rare for such an expensive and professional piano to be in a public high school. 

The piano is a Steinway Model D. It is commonly used for professional orchestra concerts and typically used in music schools. It was brought to the school by former SHS band director Dan Bolin. 

According to Robert Bussel, a piano technician registered by The Piano Technician’s Guild, the Steinway Model D piano is used in around 90% of the concert halls across the U.S. Furthermore, the piano has gone up in value to around $150,000 or more for a replacement cost. 

Orchestra director Thomas Wright was a student at SHS a few years after the piano arrived. 

“I understand that the school bought it back in 1981 or ‘82,” Wright said. “That was before I was actually a student at the school. When I was a student, the piano was used every now and then in the auditorium.”

The Steinway Model D is also used in piano competitions such as the American Pianist Association. A few years ago, the orchestra at SHS had the opportunity to perform with the association, according to Bussel.  

The piano is still at SHS, but is not in use often. It is considered unusual at a public high school, since the Steinway is a world-renowned piano. 

Since the piano was not easily accessible, and had not been tuned for quite some time, the piano became difficult to play.

“Ever since I became the orchestra director here, even when I first started, the piano was stored in a box backstage in the auditorium, covered with other staging equipment,” Wright said. 

The repairs of the Steinway would be expensive. Due to the piano not being played much, the instrument has come with problems that require a new set of strings and other repairs to the inside. 

“The whole mechanism that makes the key go down and the hammer coming up and hits

Although it is no longer in perfect shape to be played by the APA, the piano might get an upgrade in its near future. The virus has allowed some savings to be put to use to help restore the piano. (Photos contributed by Thomas Wright)

 the string, all of that is going to be replaced,” Wright said. 

According to Wright, the reason that the Association had stopped using the Steinway was because the piano needed extensive repairs.

The leftover funds from last year are going to be used to repair the piano. 

Despite the hardships the piano has faced over the years, the piano is still an amazing instrument to have in the school. 

“The Steinway Model D is still considered the top of the line piano of the world, but that particular piano’s not in great shape,” Wright said.