Sunday, November 15, 2015

Carl Demler RIP

Just returned from NYC on Thursday. Must report a great loss to many of us. Carl Demler of Beethoven Pianos in NYC has passed suddenly at 79. I will remember the kindest set of brown eyes I shall never see again. I counted Carl a good friend. He is missed already. Many of his staff have considered collecting their memories and reminiscences concerning him into some kind of book. I hope they do. I would be willing to help in its technical editing and design.

His family and staff are continuing Beethoven Pianos and while there I played their Hamburg Steinway D - a piano of great character, perhaps too bright for some, but not irritatingly bright. After all, it's a Steinway D. I also played a Sauter concert grand, one of their uprights and a remarkable Grotrian upright that actually beat out another excellent Steinway B they had there. This Grotrian upright actually had the best action of those I played with the exception of their Steinway D in the concert area.

Those who might think me crass for promoting pianos at the same time I announce the passing of the master of the store perhaps wont get it: Beethoven's needs to continue. It has a unique place among its worthy competition on New York's piano row. It's craftsmen are incredible artists and technicians who make these great pianos perform as they do. The Sauter concert grand was a beautiful piano with a nice firm touch and warm sound. Rather than the usual black, this piano perhaps mahogany or some darker wood If you are in the market for an incredible concert piano or your own practice piano, please consider Beethoven Pianos

Carl Demler's Obituary Notice in the New York Times

Carl standing next to the outstanding Grotrian-Steinweg parlour grand formerly owned by Imelda Marcos
Carl at the front of the beloved old store which used to be across the street from Beethoven Pianos' present location on W. 58th St. in New York City.

Carl standing next to a stack of golden age era plates for various grand pianos, mostly Steinway, at Beethoven Pianos' factory.


  1. Sorry to hear that Carl is gone. I dealt with him from time to time over many years. I agree, he was a nice man.

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  3. Thank you so much for writing this. My name is Aya, and I am Carl's daughter. We really appreciate the kind words.

  4. I'm heartbroken to have read this. Aya, you and your family are in my prayers. Patrick Kim