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Digital Piano Specialist Store Opens in Tokyo
Otto Akihabara, specialist store of digital piano opened on July 1 at SEEKBASE, Akihabara, Tokyo. It’s a subsidiary of Nagoya-based Otai Audio, a high-quality audio products retailer which also operates DJ/DTM specialist store, and organizes DMC Japan, an international DJ event, and BEAT GRANDPRIX, Japan’s largest song track production event, etc.
Yosuke Inouye, president of otto explains why the company launched the digital piano specialist store, “Every digital piano distributed by many different manufacturers have unique, rich and sophisticated functions. They meet needs and conditions of Japanese homes and online environment, and are one of the most attractive instrument among users today. But they still have a somewhat negative image as an alternative to acoustic piano. We thought that it was our mission to change this misinterpretation and opened otto in collaboration with the manufacturers.”
Otto has 30 models of digital piano of various makes at the sales floor. At one corner, it has a cozy lesson room using digital piano. When opened, the store held an opening reception providing piano concerts and live sessions inviting DJ and players of other instruments. As the store announced the event using social media, 100 seats were instantly filled. Inouye plans to continue this kind of event for lonely home pianists and build a network for them in coming months.
Otto also plans a casual style online piano competition for players of acoustic, digital and MIDI pianos at reasonable fees of 2,000 yen (students) or 3,000yen (adults) in one of coming months. Contestants can submit their performance data uploading on YouTube.
Inouye says, “We hope we can offer budding pianists a stage where they are properly judged by their musicality and skill. It will help contribute to establish local piano culture. It will support not only students and busy businesspersons but also aged and handicapped pianists to take part online. “
He continued, “Opened in the difficult times when our society and economy were impacted by COVID-19, we have struggled keeping our business going so far. But we believe promoting advantages and capabilities of digital pianos as well as building good relationship with local customers are the only way to survive. “