December is the month two leading U.S. trade magazines announce their annual industry awards. Musical Merchandise Review reveal their Dealers’ Choice Awards, and Music Inc. magazine publishes their Product Excellence Awards.
These honours are primarily for “best-in-class” musical instruments and recording equipment, however, we shall concern ourselves only with piano awards. This year sees Steinway and Kawai as biggest winners.
Dealers’ Choice Awards
Music Merchandise Review (MMR) has an impressive pedigree—it has been publishing to the trade continuously since 1879. The MMR awards were established in 1992, and are voted for only by musical instrument retailers who subscribe to the publication.
MMR’s 2018 piano awards are as follows:
Acoustic Piano Line of the Year
Kawai GL Series
Steinway & Sons
Winner: Steinway & Sons
Pro Digital Piano
Kawai MP Series
Yamaha MX Series
Winner: Kawai MP Series
Home Digital Keyboard
Casio Privia Series
Kawai Novus NV10
Roland HP Series
Yamaha Clavinova Series
Winner: Casio Privia Series
Product of the Year.
Allen & Heath’s SQ Series (compact digital mixers) was voted Product of the Year. The Kawai Novus NV10 and the Hailun HG-218 EP (Ebony Polish) were both nominated in this category.
Product Excellence Awards
Music Inc.’s Product Excellence Awards are now in their 12th year and again are voted for by trade professionals. Last year Kawai’s GX-2 Blak Series (acoustic) and Dexibell’s Vivo S7 (digital) were both winners.
This year piano honours were awarded to Steinway’s Model B grand piano (acoustic) and to Kawai’s Novus NV10 (digital/hybrid).
Some take awards “with a pinch of salt”, but if they draw attention to the musical instrument industry, can that be a bad thing?
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