Red October [Krasniy Oktyabr]
- Anne Beetem Acker
Soviet piano manufacturing firm. It was formed in 1924 from a conglomeration of major piano factories: Lunacharsky (formerly Schröder), Offenbacher, Mühlbach, and Becker (which had merged with Schröder in 1903). The new firm was named Krasniy Oktyabr (Red October; a reference to the October 1917 revolutionary coup) in 1927 with headquarters in what had been the Becker-Schröder factory in St Petersburg (later Leningrad). It became the largest piano manufacturer in the USSR: by 1934, 19,731 uprights and grands had been produced, growing to 350,000 by 1983. Action parts were made at the Lunacharsky factory, felt in Moscow, and wrest pins and cloth in Leningrad. Between 1931 and 1941 new factories were added in Sverdlovsk, Saratov, Ufa, Kuibyshev, Gor’ky, and other Soviet cities to make components and supply uprights to the firm. World War II temporarily ended production and some facilities were demolished, but by 1949 output had reached pre-war levels. However, mass production impaired quality, and the pianos are not highly regarded....