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King University advances music program with the purchase of five Steinway & Sons pianos & by offering $100,000 in new music scholarships

February 3, 2020

King University has made dramatic enhancements to the school’s music program with the addition of five Steinway & Sons pianos and $100,000 in new music scholarships. This investment has been made possible by a recent gift from the Jack Trayer Charitable Trust. The music program will now be using Steinway & Sons pianos exclusively for instruction and performance.

“King University is grateful to all our donors whose generosity makes investments such as this possible,” said King University President Alexander W. Whitaker IV, “The arts are a strong pillar in the foundation of this institution, and it is imperative we provide our students with the training that will prepare them for the professional world. The investment in these industry-elite Steinway pianos will enhance our student experience.”

Making this possible is a significant gift from the late Herbert Malcolm “Jack” Trayer through the Jack Trayer Charitable Trust. Trayer was a well-known Tri-Cities business executive in the restaurant, hospitality, and food service industries for many decades until his death in 2006.  He owned and operated several hotels and restaurants throughout the region.  Trayer credited the patronage of King University students for the success of his restaurants in Bristol. Celebrated for his support of the arts, this gift continues his legacy by providing for the purchase of these Steinway pianos and creates a $100,000 scholarship fund for music students at King.  A music classroom will be named in his honor.

Steinway and Sons delivered three upright pianos and two small grand pianos to the King University Music department on February 3rd.

“Steinway pianos are recognized as the leading concert pianos in the industry and are, without a doubt, the finest quality instrument built in America,” said Pat Flannagan, Ph.D., professor of music and director of choral activities and chair of music department, “King University prepares and inspires musicians to reach their highest potential. The use of these Steinway pianos will enhance our mission in perfecting their talents.”

Steinway & Sons has been crafting the finest pianos in the world for more than 160 years, and a well-maintained Steinway piano commonly functions at a high level for more than 100 years.

“King University is thrilled to be able to offer such uncompromising quality to its current and future students. Students will find inspiration in their ability to realize their full artistic talents,” adds President Whitaker. “Employing these new Steinway pianos, King University’s exceptional faculty will prepare our students to perform at the highest level.”

The Music Department at King University offers a Bachelor of Arts in Music and a Bachelor of Arts in Education with licensure in vocal or instrumental music. These elite instruments will be used by music and choral students in all required courses. The music program also offers students opportunities to travel throughout the United States and abroad expanding their understanding of, and allowing them to experience, how music changes with different environments and cultures. Students have the opportunity to discover and sharpen their abilities through performance by participating in ensembles such as symphonic band, jazz band, symphonic choir, women’s and men’s ensembles, jazz choir, and chamber choir.