The family and estate of the late Wham! The star donated his prized Bechstein piano to the Nordoff Robbins music therapy charity because George wanted to support the cause after his death.
Jon Ellery, managing director of renowned amplifier manufacturer Marshall, purchased the instrument for his new state-of-the-art studio in Milton Keynes. He told the Sunday Express: “It’s going to be something really special because we have a really amazing recording studio, so to have that and for people who come through it over the next ten years…it will be unbelievable.
“It’s important that we bring it to a working studio to continue playing it the way George Michael used it.
He added, “We’ve had our ups and downs in the pandemic as an industry and that’s really our legacy now for Marshall. For us, it’s about putting it in our internal studio for the bands of the future to use.
“We wanted it to come into a musical environment and not be put away in a museum where it wouldn’t be seen and used and just stored. It’s amazing that we’ve been involved in making music for sixty years so that speaks for itself and that’s all we can do is continue to be central players and that’s it .
Friday’s live auction drew bids from around the world. It was performed at the event by Derek Paravicini who is blind and autistic.
The Sunday Express reported last week that the charity was thrown a lifeline when George’s estate donated the piano at auction to raise much-needed funds. He supported Nordoff Robbins throughout his life.
The charity’s CEO, Sandra Schembri, said: ‘He was a very private donor and he gave most things without people knowing he was giving them.
“It’s the estate that comes to us and tells us that’s what they would have wanted. They want to continue to support you.
“There are a lot of times at Nordoff Robbins where we choked back our tears. It’s really touching because our kind of work will never be done.
After his death on Christmas Day 2016, the full extent of George’s philanthropic work came to light, earning him huge praise because he had avoided publicity for his generosity.