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November 14, 2018 2:39 PM

Kawai Unveils 100 Million Yen Crystal Clear Grand Piano

Kawai staged a press conference on October 19 at Tokyo Midtown, Roppongi, to announce CR-1M crystal clear grand piano built in commemoration of the company’s 90th anniversary.

As a limited production model, 5 units are exclusively built and distributed at 100 million yen retail excluding consumption tax.

Crystal clear piano cabinet isn’t new to Kawai. Actually the company started development of a piano in transparent case using acrylic material in 1971. A prototype completed in 1973, and advanced CR-40 put into the market in 1992. Today, the company builds CR-40A, 6.4 million yen retail, to order.

Coming in a completely new design, Kawai plans to explore a new luxurious market with CR-1M.

Kentaro Kawai, senior managing director of Kawai said in his opening speech, “It’s our first approach to build only 5 units of precious grand piano to order, and also it represents our pride as a piano maker making headway toward 100th anniversary.”

According to Shoe Eitaki, general manager of Product Planning and Design Section, CR-1M is designed to provide luxury atmosphere, and enhance elegance of pianists in pursuit of maximum effects of two opposite optical factors, light transmission and reflection.

Based on architecture of Shigeru Kawai, the flagship model, it’s carefully built with meticulous hands and eyes of Kawai master craftsmen in quite delicate balance.

Bottom half of the case comes in silver-plated mirror polish, while the upper half allows perfect transmission of lights. The two different parts meet in the middle of the case, and generate subtly gradient focal effect. As pianist expresses his or her emotion, the piano beautifully reflects the player’s personal characters. While keeping traditional form of piano, it employs a unique case 17% shallower than conventional grand model. CR-1M generates fantastic feeling as if it’s afloat. Kawai accepts requests for custom change of details.

Yoshiki of X JAPAN, who loves crystal clear grand piano, commented in his video letter that he had been testing and playing the new model since two years ago, and eventually a great piano exceeding his expectation
was born, and it perfectly fits his taste.

About the pricing of CR-1M, Eitaki said, “It comes at an extraordinary price of 100 million yen. In the process of our engineers and craftsmen pursuing the highest level of technology and materials in every detail, it came out that not a few works could best be done only by human hands from silver-plating of the case to exclusively designed bolts and nuts carved and polished by hands, and two to three extra pieces of case built and selected for ultimately beautifullook.” (photo above: Kentaro Kawai, left, and Shoe Eitaki.)

Kawai displayed CR-1M at basement galleria of Tokyo Midtown Bldg. until November 4 to deliver alluring sound produced by the built-in automatic playing system.

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