Czech team in Youth in Harmony*: Tom, Iva, Terezia, Paja, Dilara
The Czech production of musical instruments has a very long history and is characterised by high quality. Czech brands such as Amati, Petrof, Rieger-Kloss or Strunal enjoy a great reputation outside the borders of the Czech Republic.
The company Amati is one of the most significant producers of musical wind instruments. It is based in two cities – Kraslice (mapa) and Hradce Králové (mapa). The city of Kraslice can be considered the cradle of musical instrument production in Bohemia because wind instruments have been manufactured there since the beginning of the 17th century.
The brand Amati itself was established in 1945. It was named after the famous Italian violinist Nicola Amati. It initially also produced string instruments but the factory was nationalised in 1948 and Kraslice gradually became the centre of wind and percussion instrument production. At the same time, the company was merged with the world-famous factory V. F. Červený, thus creating the largest enterprise producing wind and percussion instruments in Bohemia, and throughout whole world.
Amati exports its products to more than 50 countries. Czech musical instruments are popular with musicians from neighbouring Germany and Austria as well as Japan, South America, Australia and Thailand.
The family company, based in Hradce Králové (mapa), is the biggest European producer of pianos and upright pianos, which have already been constructed there for 5 generations. The founder of the company Antonín Petrof (1839–1915) built his first concert piano in 1864 and he changed his father’s joiner’s workshop into a room for piano production one year later. In 1899, the Emperor appointed Antonín Petrof as a secret councillor and the court producer of pianos for Austria-Hungary. Both of these titles were later inherited by his two sons.
Most work is still done manually and it takes about nine months to produce one instrument that consists of about seven thousand components.
The opera singer Peter Dvorský is one of the proud owners of a PETROF piano. The exclusive PETROF pianos have accompanied e.g. Plácido Domingo, José Carreras, Luciano Pavarotti, Eva Urbanová and many other musicians during their concerts in Prague.
The company Rieger-Kloss Organs from Krnov (mapa) belongs among the biggest world manufacturers of pipe organs. It is also one of the oldest producers of the king of instruments in the world. The founders of the company were Franz Rieger and his brother Otto, who established their first workshop in 1873 and built their first organ for the World Exposition in Vienna. The company soon became the most significant factory producing organs in Austria-Hungary and throughout Europe. Rieger organs were constructed in Norway, England, Spain, Turkey, Palestine, Portugal, Denmark, German as well as more distant countries such as Argentina or Mexico.
Today, people can hear Rieger-Kloss organs in Europe, North and South America, Asia and even Africa. The company combines the long tradition of organ production in Krnov with the newest technologies in the field of producing musical instruments when making organs.
The Strunal company is the biggest producer of string instruments in Europe. It is based in the town of Luby in the western part of the Czech Republic. The company continues the tradition of producing musical instruments in this region, which dates back to the second half of the 16th century.
Strunal makes use of the skilfulness and craftsmanship of its violin and guitar makers as well as modern technologies invented by engineers. They exclusively select quality resonant wood for their production, which ensures the excellent sound qualities of the instruments.
* Youth in Harmony is funded by Erasmus+ Programme. Thanks to Turkey National Agency, the BVB and its partners implemented a project through the European Year of Cutlural Heritage.