Pianos made by: AXL Musical Instrument Co., Shanghai, China; and Wertheim factory, Shanghai, China
Wertheim pianos were first produced in Germany from 1875 to 1908, and then in Richmond, Australia, a suburb of Melbourne, from 1908 to 1935. Approximately 18,000 uprights and grands were made during the Richmond period. They were popular, all-purpose pianos with a good reputation for easy maintenance, and were used in a wide variety of settings, including homes, schools, and public halls. The most famous exponent of the Wertheim brand was Dame Nellie Melba, who frequently requested Wertheim pianos for her performances.
The Wertheim brand is currently owned and distributed to the international market by John Martin, who revived it in 2002. In his more than 46 years in the music industry, Martin has owned full-line retail music stores, managed a buying group for music-store retailers, and manufactured and distributed Wertheim pianos. Martin says that Wertheim’s aim is to make the best-value, top-class pianos, using the best designs, materials, and workmanship, and working with leading piano designers and technicians from Germany, the U.S., Australia, and New Zealand.
Most Wertheim pianos for the North American market are made by AXL Musical Instrument Co., in Shanghai, China, which also manufactures the better-known Palatino brand. These Wertheims come in three series: Gold (model numbers beginning with W), Euro (WE), and Platinum (WP). The Gold-series models are for the budget-conscious buyer, Euro and Platinum for those desiring higher performance and quality. All contain German Röslau strings, solid spruce soundboard, and an 18-ply pinblock. The Gold and Euro series models use a Chinese action, the Platinum series models use a Renner action, with the option of a Wessell, Nickel & Gross composite action. The Euro and Platinum series have German Strunz soundboards and Renner hammers, and real ebony wood sharps. Currently available in North America are 48", 48½", and 49" verticals, and 4' 11", 5' 7", and 6' 1" grands.
New in 2017 is the Wertheim/Fandrich (WF) series. These models, designed by internationally recognized piano designer Del Fandrich, are assembled in Wertheim’s own new factory from the best internationally sourced components by workers who, the company says, are rewarded for high quality rather than high volume. The new models will be positioned to fill the mid- to upper range of the piano market.
Warranty: 5 years, parts and labor, to original purchaser.