Concert Stand Review – Mahaliah Edwards
For many musicians in many genres and styles, having a music stand is a must-have. For me, they play a vital role in both my practise and performances, whether I’m playing solo or in ensembles. For over 3 years now, I’ve been using RATstands’ Scherzo stand as my go-to. Its innovative no-screw build means that my days of frustratingly losing screws for stands are no more! It is the most lightweight stand I’ve ever used and has been the trusted folding stand for my performances and gigs all over the UK. When RATstands reached out, I already knew I could rely on their innovative, high-quality products, so I’m thrilled to be a Brand Ambassador for them. As part of the partnership, they have #gifted me a product of choice my to try and I have chosen the Concert Stand. Here is my review.
First Impressions: Beautiful
I chose this stand because I already owned the Scherzo stand and it does a great job of being my travelling stand but I was really looking for something that would be make a reliable and sturdy practise companion at home and something which would last for many years to come. As I unpackaged the stand, I was immediately taken back by the beautiful wooden tray which is what originally stood out to me when I first saw it online. The wood, sourced in Finnish forests, makes a really bold and unique statement and completely complements my practise space. The grain is gorgeous and has a lovely satin finish to it; if you’re looking for something which stands out and adds character to a space, this music stand is the one, on aesthetics alone.
I have to say the instructions for assembly were very clear and easy to follow, with only around 4 – 5 steps. I did however have a bit of trouble attaching the wooden tray to the metal stem but got there with a little help!
Testing it out
Using this music stand is very easy and faff-free. There are no screws so you can simply pull the stem up or down to adjust the height. This was great for me because I like to experiment with using different heights and angles for different types of practice i.e. turning the stand around the opposite way for memory work or making it higher when working on my posture and performance stamina. I played around with the angle lots and tried it at a flat angle – I really enjoyed the versatility. I also really like the lip in the tray which is perfect for storing pencils, rubbers and other little accessories which are my practise essentials.
My biggest criticism was that my iPad was too heavy for the stand. Every time I placed my it on, it slid down. I’m the type of musician who likes to put everything out around them and on their stand i.e. music, pencils, metronome, iPad etc so I must say that the Concert Stand didn’t compliment my typical practise habits in this respect. Nevertheless, it held most of my bigger books like my Carl Flesch scales book (which is famously thick)… I just couldn’t pile a load of books on it without it lowering. Having said that, I do know that there is the Concert stand Pro which has a thumbscrew mechanism on the stem to lock it in place so this would probably eradicate this small issue.
The Final Score
Honestly, overall I really like the Concert Stand. It is striking and most importantly does the job. It is a quality music stand and I know it will stand the test of time. I’ve given the stand a 4.5 star review overall. Here’s why:
It is an elegant yet striking stand which is a wonderful addition to any musical space. I personally really love the wooden tray because it fits with my personal style.
It is a versatile stand which is fit for purpose and can be used by any musician. I use it for my home practise but I could easily put it in the car and take it to a venue for an elevated performance look if I wanted to. The height works whether I’m practising standing up or sitting down for a chamber music session.
Whilst the stand didn’t take the weight of my iPad, I know that RATstands do carry a dedicated Tablet stand in their product line (as well as a vast array of other stands) so this could be something to look into. Perhaps if you are wanting to pile lots books on the stand, the Concert Pro may be a better fit.
As a premium quality stand this does have a premium price tag to match. Starting from £205, this would be an investment for a musician’s home, teaching studio and a great choice for a music venue or hall and wanting a quality stand to match their aesthetic.
I think it would be interesting to follow up in six months with an updated review and compare my thoughts from now.
Let us know what you think, do you own a #RATstand and if so, which one is your favourite and why?