Interview Stefan Deckers, Bol pianos Hasselt

Stefan Deckers was already involved with Bol Pianos & Orchestra as a child. Since then he knew he wanted to go further in the world of pianos. And that feeling hasn't gone away anymore. Together with his wife Vanessa, Stefan Bol runs Pianos & Orchestra in Hasselt. The family business was founded as early as 1971 and so he was involved early on in the sale and technique of pianos and organs. His favourite? The Steingraeber & Söhne. These instruments continue to amaze him time and again as a pianist and piano technician. In addition, Stefan continues to fascinate that the same piano can sound so different to everyone. It is a miracle that the combination of nature and technique makes every piano so special.

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How did you learn to play the piano? 

My father was a professional pianist and so I learned already a bit from pianos. But I went to the academy when I was 8 years old and from the age of 14 I went to the Lemmens Institute in Leuven to study piano. There I graduated as a laureate piano, chamber music and music history. Until our big expansion 5 years ago, I gave piano lessons full-time at the academy.

What are your tips on getting a second-hand piano? 

Every second hand piano I choose personally so that I can offer the best instruments to my clients. Afterwards, every instrument is checked and perfected here in our workshop. We can solve every piano problem.

Which piano would you recommand for the novice player? 

In any budget you should be able to choose the best piano possible. People sometimes think that a beginning pianist doesn't need a good instrument. Of course, this is important. The better the instrument, the better the pianist can develop and enjoy it. Our rental system offers many budgetary possibilities

What are you tips for maintaing a piano? 

It is very important to maintain the correct humidity level and to have your instrument tuned twice a year. Only let real craftsmen work on your piano! Unfortunately, we notice that this is not always the case.

Which pianos are more sold, classical or digital? 

For me there is no alternative. If you want to play the piano, an acoustic piano is a must! Because with a digital instrument, the stop is pre-programmed. A living, acoustic instrument gives you so much more piano pleasure!

What makes this store location special?

We are the main store in Belgium. With more than 120 different pianos and grand pianos to try out at 1 location we are already special. Despite the size of the store and the offer, the family aspect remains crucial for us. This to our staff as well as to the customer. The atmosphere remains homely in our various showrooms so that customers can take their time to choose their instrument

Which musician would you like to hear or did you listen to?

We regularly hold concerts here in our showroom. Recently we had the honour to let no one else play the Rahman El Bacha in our showroom. An incredible pianist who really knows how to get the full range of sound out of an instrument

Why does the customer choose Bol?

Because of the large and diverse offer; but especially the "diversity". Everywhere you find the same uniformity and people like to compare with other brands/sounds. Really compare: that's only possible here. You can choose from various brands in different price ranges. Every pianist will find the instrument that suits him/her best.

What do you think makes Bol piano special?

You won't find the large, diverse and European offer anywhere else. The unique thing is that you can play all these pianos and grand pianos side by side and compare them. Because a piano sound is personal and every pianist will experience timbre differently.

Stefan Deckers Op De Piano