S.I.R., the long-standing leader in the musical equipment rental and rehearsal studio industry, has sold its 310 W 52nd Street building to an investment group. The New York City space will become part of a 37-story luxury condominium project.
S.I.R.'s 52nd street property housed three different studios including its Soundstage, a production room with sizable dimensions. For the past 26 years, almost every major artist in the world has rehearsed or showcased at that location, including The Rolling Stones, The Who, Aerosmith, Blondie, Steely Dan, Eric Clapton, Bruce Springsteen, The Darkness, Sting, Alicia Keys, KISS, Phil Collins, Paul Simon, Cyndi Lauper, Foreigner, Whitney Houston and others.
S.I.R. recently acquired a new 18,000 square foot facility at 475 10th Avenue to house its rental operation, offices and maintain its inventory of instruments and sound equipment. They are also procuring an additional new space where rehearsal studios will be constructed. S.I.R.'s 25th street location is currently being renovated as well. This location will house a new 40'x70' soundstage and studios as the new space is being completed.
"Separating the rental division from the rehearsal business is something we¹ve been meaning to do for a long time," says Michael Johnson, president of S.I.R. New York. "The division will create a more pleasant overall atmosphere for our clients."
Founded in 1967 by Ken Berry and Dolph Rempp in Los Angeles, S.I.R. serviced the recording and concert industry with the rental of musical instruments (hence the name – Studio Instrument Rentals) and housed some of the first professional rehearsal studios in the country. S.I.R. New York was created in 1974 by Johnson, Berry and Rempp. That same year, Bo Holst, current operations manager, began his career at S.I.R.
"I've had the good fortune to work with so many great people that have come into our 52nd Street building and I'll always have fond memories," remarks Holst. "I'm looking forward very much to putting together our new rehearsal rooms that will help create an outstanding environment for New York¹s music community."
In addition to New York and Los Angeles, S.I.R. currently has offices in San Francisco, Nashville, Miami, Seattle, Las Vegas and Phoenix. –Jane Cohen and Bob Grossweiner