“It is not often that you get a piano of this age that is of concert standard,” piano technician Rudi Strydom says of the 122-year-old Steinway at the historic Northwards House in Parktown, Joburg. “Pianists are blown away by the fact that this ancient instrument performs like a modern-day concert instrument.”

The 1902 Steinway piano, with its intricately inlaid rosewood case, has a storied history, having arrived in the Herbert Baker building in 1913, when mining magnate Sir George Albu and his family took ownership of the mansion. It was played by Albu’s daughter Kitty, whose books on the lives of composers live on as part of the Northwards legacy. ..

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