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Bernstein Pianos...pioneering through the decades

In 2005, the company moved production to a new factory; Hailun piano manufacturers in Ningbo, China. For over 20 years, Hailun had been sought after as one of the highest quality piano parts manufacturers in the world. Many of the top concert instruments from Europe featured parts made by Hailun. It’s a fascinating story how their pianos have evolved over the years and the company has developed into an internationally award-winning piano company.

 

The Hailun company was originally the Ningbo Piano Parts Factory. In 2001, Hailun invested heavily in Japanese digital equipment and production lines. (Exporting machinery of this kind is now prohibited, to protect the Japanese manufacturers.) During this very productive year, Hailun partnered with Peter Veletzky, a prominent fourth-generation Viennese craftsman and piano designer. This relationship combined Hailun’s precise production methods and exceptional skills with Veletzky’s quality philosophy. In addition to this partnership, Hailun employed renowned American piano designer and engineer, George F. Emerson, Viennese piano tuning and voicing specialist, Zlatkovic Sibin, Japanese production specialist, Ema Shigeru and French scale designer, Stephen Paulello. Not many piano companies can compete with this array of skills.

The piano market is very competitive. Hailun’s decision to evolve from a parts manufacturer to a full piano manufacturer was not taken lightly. With their Japanese equipment and staff expertise, Hailun took confidently to this new challenge.

In 2005, CCTV reported that Hailun Pianos had entered into the piano market with instruments that met the European quality standards. The list of prestigious European owners included the University of Music Austria, the University of Music Brussels, Conservatories Paris, Weinen Music Seminar Vienna and Music Verein Vienna. Hailun’s dealer network extended to 260 piano dealers in Europe and more than 40 dealers in Japan.

Later in 2005, the European Chinese Association held a peace celebration at the Golden Concert Hall in Vienna. The Hailun piano was chosen to be featured at this event. This was the first time ever that a Chinese made concert grand piano had been featured at the Viennese Golden Concert Hall. Then, in February 2006, the Denmark Royal family introduced a Hailun piano for use in the Royal Palace.

Later in 2006, Hailun received the prestigious “China Top Brand Name” award. This award, presented only once every three years, has only been awarded to three other manufacturers of China’s 200 piano producing companies. This marked the first time that a privately held, non-government company had been awarded this distinguished honour. Hailun is also the first piano manufacturer in China to receive the Technic International Standard Award and ISO9001:2000 CCIC Certificate for international quality control.

 

Today, Hailun prides themselves as being one of China’s top piano manufacturers. With more than 20 years of successful manufacturing experience, as well as producing parts for well-known European companies such as Steinway & Sons, Hailun’s 430,000 square foot factory now employs over 900 workers. Hailun makes no compromise on quality, using parts like German Roslau strings, high-grade aged spruce from Siberia, wool from Germany and felt from England. Each of Hailun piano’s 9000 parts is guaranteed to last for many years.

Some of the Australian network of Bernstein dealers were thrilled to visit the Bernstein Hailun factory in October 2007. Due to the dedication and standards of Hailun, you could almost think you were in a top European piano factory. We also feel this sentiment when people visit our dealers and experience the Bernstein pianos for themselves. It’s often any eye-opening experience and most fall in love with the Bernstein pianos.

 

Hailun explains five points that set them apart from other piano manufacturers:

* Japanese high-tech processing: A five-axis machine is used throughout the production process for unmatched accuracy.
* Assembly precision: Five-axis technology is also used for quality consistency.
* Key bed stability: One of the most common problems of a Chinese-produced piano is warping of the key bed. Hailun has created a T-shaped metal reinforcement to ensure the shape of the key bed to remain stable and never change.
* Pin block stability: Throughout Hailun’s 20 years of producing piano parts, they have created an outstanding tuning pin and pin block system.
* String tuning stability: Hailun imports German Roslau strings to ensure the highest international standards. Hailun has developed a machine to press the strings automatically, to reduce the string’s elasticity and increase tuning stability. This process is time effective and very reliable.

One important link for Bernstein is that the late Master Piano Builder and Designer, Klaus Fenner, worked in the Yantai plant in China over a five year period in the late 1990’s. His designs and skills were an inspiration to Hailun, who supplied Yantai with components. Klaus was a close friend of the Capicchianos from 1980. His guidelines and support were substantial in the early years of Bernstein in Australia.


Bernstein Pianos are now on display at various Bernstein dealers across Australia. To find your local Bernstein dealer click here.

 

 

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