Instagram Combined Shape quotation Created with Sketch. 69
Potsdam Prepared: COVID-19 Updates

New Instruments Strike a Bright Note at The Crane School of Music

June 30, 2020

Miles DeCastro, an instrumental repair technician and instructor at SUNY Potsdam’s Crane School of Music, opens and inspects student musical instruments that the School has been loaned, thanks to new partnerships with Yamaha and Eastman Winds.

SUNY Potsdam’s Crane School of Music has been named a recipient of a significant loan of 237 new instruments intended to bolster music education. The instruments, valued at $367,896, arrived at Crane over the past week, courtesy of the musical equipment companies Yamaha and Eastman Winds.

The delivery marks the third year of Crane’s partnership with Yamaha, and its first such arrangement with Eastman. The instruments are vital in replacing worn out “techniques” instruments that students use to learn secondary instruments, such as when a saxophone major enriches their learning by spending a semester playing trumpet, said Miles DeCastro, an instructor of instrument repair technology, who is responsible for the maintenance of more than 1,200 instruments at Crane.

“Student level instruments are generally meant to last 10 to 15 years, but some of ours are 40 to 60 years old,” said DeCastro. “With excellent care — which Crane can provide, given our in-house repair shop — you could reasonably hope to double the life expectancy, but tripling or quadrupling is not reasonable. Worn-out instruments create a large, frustrating barrier to learning for students.”

Yamaha and Eastman will receive back the lightly used instruments at the end of each academic year and will be able to sell them at a discount to their network of dealers. Crane has been privileged to have strong partnerships over many years with leading companies in the music industry, which have brought numerous benefits to the school and its students, said Dr. Michael Sitton, dean of The Crane School of Music.

“These loan inventories of new instruments benefit our students in critical music education classes,” said Sitton. “Having these wonderful new instruments available for student use — supplementing Crane's own extensive inventory of older instruments — enriches students’ experience and enhances their ability to learn effectively. We are deeply grateful to Yamaha and Eastman Winds for their commitment to music education.”

About The Crane School of Music:

Founded in 1886, SUNY Potsdam’s Crane School of Music has a long legacy of excellence in music education and performance. Life at Crane includes an incredible array of more than 300 recitals, lectures and concerts presented by faculty, students and guests each year. The Crane School of Music is the State University of New York’s only All-Steinway institution. For more information, please visit

For Media Inquiries

Bret Yager 315-267-2114

General News