Mitch Paola, Owner
Mitch has lived his entire life in the greater Portland area and has been working in the piano world for 30 years. His appreciation of classical music started at a young age when he spent endless hours with his grandfather, the late Maurice (Moe) Schuster, Moe’s Pianos namesake, who was a concert violinist with the Portland Symphony.
Mitch joined the family business in the early 1980’s and became part owner. In 1989, Moe’s Pianos became part of Sherman Clay and Mitch became the General Manager. Mitch loves the challenge of finding the right piano for a particular client. He’s personally matched thousands of pianos to satisfied clients that include Steinway artists, baseball greats, NFL quarterbacks and NBA stars. He also has an ongoing partnership with many Universities, Schools, and Churches including University of Oregon, Portland State University, Reed College and Portland Opera.
Mitch believes you shouldn’t just buy a piano, you should own one you truly love to play.
Brenda Kell, Manager
Brenda Kell was born and raised in Walla Walla, Washington and moved to the Portland area in 1999. Prior to joining the team at Moe’s Pianos in 2000, she worked for a music company in Eastern Washington for three years. Taking pianos lessons as a child and young adult, she never outgrew her love of music, and enjoys being surrounded by beautiful pianos and the people who play them. Using her education and experience, she loves the challenge of finding the perfect piano to meet each customer’s needs and budget. She also considers it a privilege to work closely with local music teachers, artists and musical organizations. In this age of technology and hi-tech gadgets, Brenda believes that Kenneth Miller said it best… “The piano is able to communicate the subtlest universal truths by means of wood, metal and vibrating air.”
Ron Allen, Sales
Ron assisted his first piano customer in 1970 in Eugene, Oregon. He has since worked with hundreds of customers, from first time buyers to concert pianists to find just the right instrument to meet their needs.
Ron is a native Oregonian and is proud to work for a locally owned and operated piano shop where quality instruments and quality service really do matter. “It always brings a smile to my face when I think of how many pianos I have delivered to Oregon families where children, many of whom are now adults, spent quality time around the family piano.”
Ron is available to assist you with all of your piano needs. If you are thinking of buying, selling or perhaps consigning a piano, Ron has the experience and knowledge to help you. The buying process should be a pleasant experience and Ron will do everything possible to ensure that it is.
Terry Robson, Concert and Event Services/Support
Terry worked with Sherman Clay-Moe’s Pianos for nearly 27 years, originally as Warehouse Manager, and now, with Portland Piano Co. as Director of Moe’s Pianos Concert & Event Rentals. He manages a fleet of Baldwin, Steinway and Yamaha pianos that are used exclusively for special events, such as concerts, private parties, fundraisers, corporate events and weddings. Over the years, he’s developed a close working relationship with many of the local venues and concert producers enabling him to facilitate your rental needs with ease.
When not working with pianos, Terry helped co-found The Columbia River Theatre Organ Society, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, educational organization. He has served on its board of directors several times holding the positions of President and Vice-president. Although not currently serving on the board, he continues to assist with club activities.
Terry is also the proprietor of The Pampered Piano, which provides an economical source for piano accessories, such as piano covers, piano lamps and much more.
Bill Lewis, Outside Sales
Bill calls himself a struggling amateur pianist who joined Portland Piano after a forty year career as a general practice lawyer. With a twinkle in his eye he now claims to be a lawyer “in recovery”. A Midwesterner who came to Portland twenty four years ago, Bill also had a parallel career as a professional pilot who has wings from the Navy, Army and Air Force as well as an extensive flight training background.
As a teenager Bill not only stumbled his way at the keyboard, but also learned to tune and make modest repairs on pianos. He gave up on that work because to him every piano, even at concerts, sounded out of tune. This drove him crazy. The only solution was to move on to a different line of work. Over the years Bill has organized several music groups for amateur musicians to play for each other, most recently under the name “Carnaval”.
Bill’s primary focus at Portland Piano Company is reaching out to Portland area schools, churches, hotels, restaurants and the like to offer high quality broad piano support, whether it be technical services, rental resources or piano purchases. Bill also provides additional general sales support to individual customers who want to bring piano music into their lives at home. He gets a particular kick out of hearing young children play circles around him and his older amateur colleagues. He also loves hearing anyone with even the most modest piano skills playing the stunning Fazioli grand pianos we have at Portland Piano Company.