King has owned the 1924 model “M” Steinway piano for decades and used it to compose several hits including “Been to Canaan” and “Sweet Seasons.” The piano also appeared on the covers of King’s 1971 album, Music, and 1971’s “Sweet Seasons.” For years, the piano sat in the living room of King’s home in Los Angeles, though it’s been more recently used in the home studio of her Idaho ranch.
Christie’s announced the lot with a video featuring actress Chilina Kennedy, who plays King in the Broadway musical Beautiful. The clip features Kennedy and an accompanist using the piano to perform King’s “Beautiful,” while the actress also talks about portraying King and the musician’s remarkable catalog and legacy.
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“She really is the embodiment of that 1960s and Seventies movement of collaboration,” Kennedy says. “I think it’s nice to be reminded of a time when it was about the ‘we’ and about traveling together and making a sound that belonged to all of us and not just one person. I think that’s when the best art is made. And she’s truly was a natural woman, as she’s true to herself and I think women need those kinds of role models today, now more than ever.”
King’s piano will be on view to the public April 12th through 20th at Christie’s Rockefeller Galleries. The piano is expected to fetch between $40,000 and $60,000 at auction.