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Michael Prisco makes fraudulant claims against cello teacher Lila Ainsworthfradulaunt accusations intended as revenge


I, Lila Ainsworth am posting this complaint to counter Michael Prisco 's (owner of Saratoga Pianos and Magdalena's House of Pianos in Fort Edward, N.Y.) slanderous comments concerning my cello teaching posted on

Mr. Prisco does not sign his complaint or identify his relationship with me in the posting which is very typical of his business dealings. I was a customer of his piano rebuilding business which advertises on the internet but is located in the town of Fort Edward in upstate New York

Mr. Prisco has no knowledge of my cello teaching and is only seeking revenge. He lives and works in upstate New York. He is aware I teach cello, since I informed him that I wanted to purchase a piano for use in my music studio. Although he does not know my cello students, they are all aware of my problems with him and the purchase of the piano.

Michael Prisco is reputed to misrepresent his work and not honor contracts with customers. I was not aware of his fraudulent business practices before leaving a $10, 000 deposit with him to rebuild a Steinway piano. I chose to have the work done by him due to the fact that he quoted a much lower price than the rebuilders in the area of NY City. However, he did not do the work and rebuild all parts of the piano as was indicated in the work order. He completed the work many months later than promised and refused to let me inspect the work in progress as he had previously promised. I was forced to hire a lawyer and consult the local police in order to obtain the piano, since I feared losing the deposit as he was threatening bankruptcy. However, to my knowledge he is still in business at this time.

I have learned my lesson and certainly wish I had employed reputable and outstanding local piano rebuilders in my area.

My students and colleagues are well aware of my "piano saga" as this nightmare as been going on since last June of 2008. Only a few days after leaving the $10, 000 deposit with Michael Prisco of Saratoga and Magdalena's House of Pianos, I became aware that he had a criminal record and that it was likely that I would not receive the piano rebuilt as ordered. After being informed of this, I did find many complaints about him on /link removed/ and negative information from the Better Business Bureau.

Knowing this, I requested a refund, three days after leaving the deposit. Unfortunately, Mr. Prisco refused, claiming that he had already purchased parts for the rebuild. He also admitted his criminal past but claimed he was now Christian and had changed his ways. He promised he would do a great job on the piano and I hoped for the best. Unfortunately, the best did not occur. I have been without a piano almost all year in my teaching studio and have spent endless hours and money speaking with lawyers and making trips to Fort Edward, New York. After finally receiving the piano, I found it was not rebuilt properly (an understatement). Upon the advice of three much respected rebuilders in the NY City area; I realized that the piano would have to be rebuilt again in order to serve my purpose. It would not hold pitch and the new soundboard cracked within a month. Since I could not afford another rebuild, my only option was to sell the piano for much less than I paid for it and attempt to buy a cheaper piano for my studio.

Mr. Prisco did offer to come and fix the piano in my home after I informed him of the problems with the piano. However, I knew that it needed a complete rebuild and certainly could not risk allowing him to take the piano. There would be no reason to believe he would act differently or do better work the second time. I had come to the conclusion that it was time to cut all ties with this man and to try to get a working piano for my studio elsewhere.

His threats to attempt to ruin my reputation as a cello teacher are typical of his fraudulent business dealings. Obviously, he has ruined his own reputation through his own actions and resulting customer complaints posted about those actions. I have contacted the local Dobbs Ferry police concerning Michael Prisco as I have been told he has a criminal record and has been in jail for dealings in the construction business many years ago.


  • De
    Dean P. Feb 09, 2011

    GOOGLE: "prisco Homeowners Beware" FOR CBS NEWS INVESTIGATION ON MICHAEL PRISCO (CONSTRUCTION WORKER ... NOW CLAIMING TO BE A “MASTER PIANO REBUILDER" AND CO-OWNER WITH WIFE MAGDALENA "MAGGIE" PRISCO OF SARATOGA MYSTIQUE PIANO (FORMERLY SARATOGA AND MAGDALENA HOUSE OF PIANOS). Contact your local police department and the Better Business Bureau for further information. I live in the Albany, N.Y area so I am well aware of this. Thank You. FOR CONSUMER REVIEWS: GOOGLE: “Michael Prisco piano” or /link removed/ or
    "Five years ago we got began as a hobby collecting and restoring pianos for our own private collection. I purchased a piano for my wife and paid a piano rebuilder locally to rebuild it so long as I could aid. I am Michael D. Prisco and as a musician of three decades playing five instruments including voice, I know what a nice instrument sounds like."
    Saratoga Mystique Piano
    2 Wallingford Crt,
    Ganesvoort, New York 12831

    0 Votes
  • Pr
    Prisco Lies Jan 27, 2011

    Saratoga Mystique Pianos and Michael Prisco are liars, cheats and will rip you off. Buyer beware, Avoid them at all cost.

    0 Votes
  • Sa
    saratogapianos Sep 26, 2009

    our videow are under the name Saratogapiano

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  • Sa
    saratogapianos Sep 26, 2009

    Anyone can go to and see my work first hand by watching our videos.

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  • Sa
    saratogapianos Sep 26, 2009

    Please visit this websit link at the end of this statment; Lila Ainsworth is a liar. none of my soundboards have ever cracked and out of over three hundred manufactured at our facility and in pianos across the United States, I do not believe her one bit. I have and continue to manufacture soundboards for clients all over the Country, my clients are some of the best piano rebuilders in the United States. I am Michael Prisco and the claims of Lila stating that I have writen things about her as a teacher are false and I do not do the things she has said about me. Lila called and told me she was having money problems and would like to know if I would purchase the piano back from her. I told her that like her because of the economy, our business could not afford the purchase. This angered her to the point that she would try to make statments about us that have not been made before. She is attempting to ruin my reputation as a world class rebuilder, I am trained By Steinway & Sons Factory Master Craftsman, I do not do shoddy work like she wants everyone to believe. Please visit this website to validate her pleasure with the piano she purchased after it was restored. She stated that it was better than she expected.

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  • Lo
    loever of pianos Jul 23, 2009

    Is this the same Mike Prisco who opened a store on 514 Broadway in Saratoga Springs, NY. I saw a website, I also saw he is selling a piano through the Saratoga Hospital auction. Did he just change the company name or are there 2 Mike Priscos who are piano restorers.

    0 Votes
  • Jo
    jonah May 13, 2009

    Lila Ainsworth is a highly respected cello teacher. She has many accomplished students. Parents, students and colleagues greatly respect her.

    0 Votes
  • An
    anthony May 13, 2009

    Lila Ainsworth appreciates the compliment

    0 Votes
  • An
    anthony May 13, 2009

    Lila Ainsworth, cello teacher in Dobbs Ferry, is an exemplary teacher with many outstanding students. She is well loved and respected by colleagues, students and parents.

    0 Votes

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