Steinway Piano Celebration Feb. 22


To celebrate the restoration of the 1891 Steinway ‘C’ piano, the University of Wisconsin-Barron County music department is planning an Inaugural Concert and Gala Reception.  The public is invited to attend this event on Saturday, Feb. 22 at 7:30 p.m. in the Fine Arts Theatre.  The program will feature two world-renown instrumentalists; pianist Namji Kim and violist Aurelien Petillot.

More than two years ago, the Steinway piano was bequeathed to the university.  It was built in 1891 at the Steinway factory on Long Island, New York and has a full ‘artist case’ with carvings on the legs, lyre and music rack.  The instrument was in desperate need of renovation and the repair cost estimate came in at $28,000.  Pamela Johnson, UW-BC Lecturer in Music, noted that as of December 26, 2013 the financial goal had been reached.

Last May the Steinway was sent to Colfax, Wisconsin and repairs were started on the piano.  Chris Terske of Northwest Pianoworks completed the work on the piano in December and the Steinway will return to the UW-BC Fine Arts Theatre later this month.  According to Johnson, “Now in its original condition, the Steinway is an instrument of magnificent standing, great beauty, historical significance, and unmatched tone quality.”

The Inaugural Concert will feature Namji Kim who began piano studies at the age of six and gave her first recital at the age of eight at the Theatre Andre Malraux in France.  She studied at the National Superior Conservatory of Paris and obtained her bachelor and master degrees from the Juilliard School.  Her concert schedule has included performances in North America, Europe, Russia, and Korea.  Currently Kim is an Associate Professor of Music at UW-Eau Claire.

Violist Aurelien Petillot has garnered much esteem as a versatile and engaging performer and pedagogue.   He holds a bachelor’s degree from the Paris-Sorbonne University, a master’s degree from the Mannes College of Music in New York, and a Ph.D. from the University of Texas at Austin.  He has performed as a guest artist and soloist with many ensembles and orchestras in Europe and North America. Currently he is a lecturer of viola at UW-Eau Claire.

The concert will feature music appropriate to the era of the piano with works by J. S. Bach, Robert Schumann and Rebecca Clarke.  A Gala Reception to honor the donors and performers will follow the concert in the Salter Art Gallery.

This concert will be complimentary admission for people who have donated $100 or more toward the renovation.  The renovation donors have recently been notified by mail.  The remaining concert tickets are available for $30 and can be purchased at the UW-Barron County Business Office or by going to the UW-Barron County homepage at and clicking on the Spotlight section.


Barb Lang