Our tradition

Sergej Rachmaninow

"The wonderful noble tone, its ideal playability, along with the incomparable attack of the Bechstein grand piano have always filled me with enthusiasm. On this instrument an artist should be in a position to obtain the peak of perfection."


National socialism and the Second World War also mean ruin for Bechstein. After the surrender, a total new beginning is necessary.


Bechstein - always an innovative company - works with Nobel laureates to expand the possibilities of piano manufacturing. Together with Walther Nernst and Siemens the "Neo-Bechstein piano" is created, the first digital grand piano, a baby grand piano without sounding board and with thin strings, which are each guided in groups of five by a kind of microphone capsule. The sound is created by an extremely light "micro-hammer;." The instrument is only 1.40 meters long. The right pedal controls the volume; the left pedal is used to create the effect of a harpsichord or celeste tone. "In addition, a radio receiver apparatus and electrical recording works is built in, which, connected with the amplifier and speaker achieve exceptionally good transmission."


Given the global economic crisis, a strong price decline as well as a reduction in production figures and family disputes cause severe financial crises for the company. Although Helene Bechstein, born Capito, Edwin Bechstein's wife, as well as almost the entire German industry supported the Hitler regime, an assumption that piano manufacturer C. Bechstein had benefitted in the 1930s from the proximity of part of the family to the National Socialist regime, is disproved by a look at the production figures. In the 1930s it is just as bad for Bechstein as for most German piano manufacturers. With the ruthless expulsion and murder of Jewish citizens by the Nazis, Bechstein loses many of its potential buyers. The "Bechstein" was in the family of the wealthy, educated Jewish bourgeoisie one of the preferred instruments.


In the Second World War, production facilities were largely and possibly deliberately destroyed. Under the allied military government Bechstein is in the American sector. The U.S. government seizes the company, until in 1951 the American trusteeship is repealed.