Missouri State University to spend $1.6M for Steinway pianos
SPRINGFIELD, Mo. (AP) — Missouri State University is spending $1.6 million to buy 52 top-notch pianos by the end of the year.
The university’s Board of Governors recently signed off on the plan to purchase the pianos designed by Steinway & Sons, the Springfield News-Leader reported . The 52 pianos will be delivered this fall and paid over a seven-year period. Funding for the pianos came from private donations, university funds and a college enrollment fee.
“This is a game-changer,” said Shawn Wahl, interim dean of the College of Arts and Letters. “It’s a transformational decision that will have a major impact on the arts at Missouri State University.”
The university’s push for the new pianos coincides with the renovation of its music department facility, Ellis Hall.
“Once the renovations and the Steinway project are complete, I think we would be truly competitive on a national scene,” said Peter Collins, music faculty emeritus.
He said the projects will help attract top students and instructors.
The university’s piano inventory upgrade will earn the university the designation of an “All-Steinway” school. The label is coveted by music conservatories and universities, Wahl said.
“It’s really a profile-raiser,” he said.
The university will have a total of at least 66 pianos on campus with the new additions. Piano is the foundation of the music department, said Wahl. All music majors will study the instrument and the Steinway pianos will be used in programs from jazz and choral to music theater, he said.
“Our goal is to increase our enrollment,” Wahl said. “We feel that the ‘All-Steinway’ status will also benefit recruitment.”
Information from: Springfield News-Leader, http://www.news-leader.com