Cleveland Institute of Music Adds Fourteen New Steinways

Additional Pianos Bring Campus Steinway Total to 176

Founded in 1920, the Cleveland Institute of Music (CIM) is one of just seven independent conservatories of music in the United States and one of three devoted exclusively to classical music performance. It is also one of the oldest All-Steinway Schools in the world. With its acquisition this fall of 14 new pianos—including a venerable Model D concert grand—CIM has bumped its total number of Steinway and Steinway-designed pianos to 176, making it one of the schools in North America with the highest number of Steinways on campus.

CIM Artist-In-Residence & Steinway Artist Sergei Babayan, visits the selection room at Steinway's New York City factory.
A new Model D concert grand is selected for CIM’s 235-seat Mixon Hall.

CIM is globally renowned for its ability to empower today’s most talented classical music students to fulfill their dreams and potential. The conservatory’s students and graduates have won top prizes in the most prestigious piano competitions, including the Queen Elizabeth, Tchaikovsky, Rubinstein, Cleveland, Chopin, and Young Concert Artists competitions and the Avery Fischer Prize. CIM also regularly welcomes guest artists and presenters of the highest caliber, including Leon Fleisher, Emanuel Ax, Richard Goode, Angela Hewitt, Gilbert Kalish and Murray Perahia.To support this exemplary level of teaching and artistry, CIM has always been committed to utilizing the best instruments for teaching, practice, and performances, and the staggering number of Steinways on CIM’s campus is testament to this ideal. In September, CIM welcomed a Steinway Model D concert grand to the stunning stage of Mixon Hall, one of two performance venues at the school. Later this fall, 13 additional Steinways will follow the Model D to CIM, destined for practice rooms, teaching studios, and performance spaces. With these additions, CIM will also be able to expand its home piano program for piano majors to include conducting and composition students.

CIM artistic director Victor Babin (left) with a new Steinway piano in 1966. Babin was artistic director of CIM from 1961 until 1972. (Cleveland Institute of Music, 1966).


“We treasure our 102-year partnership with Steinway & Sons.”


“This is part of an ongoing replacement program in our efforts to maintain the very highest level of instruments for our world-class students and faculty,” said Kathryn Brown, Head of CIM’s Keyboard Division and Piano Department. “The countless hours that singers, instrumentalists, and pianists spend creating and rehearsing are profoundly and positively impacted by these highest-quality pianos. They serve artists in finding paths to express themselves poetically through various tonal colors and textures…and it is that symbiotic relationship we develop with a gorgeous instrument that keeps us coming back for more.”

The CIM community is thrilled not only with this fall’s new pianos but also with the consistent access to Steinways CIM has always offered, thanks to its All-Steinway School designation. As CIM Piano Faculty Daniel Shapiro puts it: “The Steinway, be it an old, smaller model or a brand new concert D, is the one piano on which students and faculty alike are most able to express themselves and find their own sound. It is therefore extremely gratifying that we are able to continue to perform and teach on Steinways. They are truly a joy to play.”

Sergei Babayan, CIM’s Mr. and Mrs. John D. Gilliam Artist-In-Residence and a Steinway Artist, personally selected the new Model D concert grand for CIM’s 235-seat Mixon Hall this summer at Steinway’s New York factory, a trip that also included Head Piano Technician Kimberly Speiran and Executive Vice President and Provost Scott Harrison. “I was provided a choice of five extraordinary instruments,” Babayan said. “I was stunned and beyond happy to see how Steinway & Sons continues to grow and surprise us with their new level of artistry and dedication. I was immediately drawn to a piano which had an unbelievable range and warmth of sound. We hope this instrument will inspire students, faculty, and guest artists with many moments of genuine artistry. I hope it will help to bring out the best from all of us.”

“A Steinway piano is a miracle: put your hands on it, and you’ll hear the voice of your soul.”

Distinguished Professor of Piano Antonio Pompa-Baldi—also a Steinway Artist—agrees. “I am very grateful that CIM continues to be an All-Steinway School,” he said, “and that it does all it can to offer its students and faculty the best pianos in the world. A Steinway piano is a miracle: put your hands on it, and you’ll hear the voice of your soul.”

With the new Steinways on campus edging CIM’s Steinway inventory ever closer to 200, CIM and Steinway have cemented their places as two of the most impactful foundations of classical music instruction in America.

“We treasure our 102-year partnership with Steinway & Sons,” said Paul Hogle, CIM’s President and CEO. “We so appreciate the assistance of Ted Good and Catherine Good Brulport of Steinway Piano Gallery Cleveland as well as our Steinway association partners in facilitating this important selection process.”

Steinway Piano Gallery Cleveland’s Owner and CEO Ted Good commented, “The faculty at CIM have been close family to us for the past 40 years and part of Steinway & Sons’ valuable collaborative team for over a century. Their continuing commitment to providing our pianos exclusively for their students is a validation of their uncompromising commitment to supply classical audiences world-wide with the greatest performers and performances. We could not be more grateful for this relationship and their confident investment in our instruments.”    

About Steinway & Sons

Since 1853, Steinway pianos have set an uncompromising standard for sound, touch, beauty, and value. Because of a dedication to continuous improvement, today’s Steinway remains the choice of 9 out of 10 concert artists, and it is the preferred piano of countless musicians, professional and amateur, throughout the world. For more information, visit

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