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Art Deco RCA 1939 Electric Piano by John Vassos


Seeking to introduce bold new designs at the RCA Pavilion at the 1939 New York Worlds Fair, noted industrial designer John Vassos was called to action. His designs were nothing short of groundbreaking. The first television was introduced, along with an aluminum portable phonograph, tubular chrome radios, and this incredible electric piano. The walnut case design was Vassos' brainchild, while RCA supplied the electronics, and Story & Clark provided the soundboard and keyboard. This example has been totally refinished, and the electrical components rebuilt. The ivory keyboard has been tuned and adjusted, resulting in a remarkably rich sound. The piano actually uses standard strings, amplified by a microphonic pickup, a precursor to the electric guitar pickup. The volume knob setting and foot gain pedal allow you to adjust from spinet to full grand piano volume, with a warm, natural tone. The piano is finished on all sides, and features a matching bench, topped in leather.


  • Materials and techniques
  • Condition
    Good. Fine Refinished and Working Condition. .
  • Wear
    Wear consistent with age and use.
  • Dimensions

    H 39 in. x W 59 in. x D 26 in.

    H 99.06 cm x W 149.86 cm x D 66.04 cm

  • Seller location
    Los Angeles, CA
  • Reference number

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