Lenny Kravitz Designed a Piano, and It’s an Instant Classic

published Oct 11, 2020
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What happens when you put the brains and creativity of a world-renowned rocker to work crafting a one-of-a-kind instrument of the highest quality? You get this incredible Lenny Kravitz and Steinway and Sons collaborative piano that belongs in an art museum. A perfect mix of Art Deco meets African art, metal meets wood, and bold meets delicate, the piece is just as loud and inviting as the music that comes from it.

“The piano was the first instrument I fell in love with, which is why I created the #KravitzGrand with @steinwayandsons,” Kravitz captioned an October 7 Instagram post. “For the design, I wanted to combine European style with an African motif to create a beautiful blend.”

The poplar legs of the instrument are directly inspired by the West African sculptures Kravitz collects and posed a challenge for Steinway craftsmen.

“When I first presented my sketches, they definitely were not entirely sure how the legs were gonna turn out,” Kravitz told Architectural Digest. “But the more time they spent on them, the more excited they would become.”

Steinway and Sons, founded in 1853, will create 10 of these Kravitz-designed pianos, each of which takes about 200 hours to complete. The rims are created with 15 layers of rock maple and accented with two layers of Macassar ebony veneer, and each of the solid bronze lyres used to support the piano’s pedals is cast at the Modern Art Foundry, housed in the former mansion of the Steinway family in Queens, New York.

“[Kravitz] pretty much had carte blanche,” Steinway president and CEO Ron Losby told AD. “But because he is a real musician, he was extremely sensitive to what was practical.”

Each piano is priced at $500,000, and a portion of the proceeds will go to the Harlem School for the Arts, where Kravtiz studied in his youth.