My guest today is Roberta Gratz, co-owner of Gratz Industries and wife of the late Donald Gratz, whose father Frank along with a business partner opened a custom metal fabrication business Treitel/Gratz in New York City in the 1920’s. When Mr. Tretial moved on, Frank renamed the business Gratz Industries, Inc. and continued to fabricate sculptures, metal furniture and produce industrial design prototypes for many of the worlds top designers. Donald, Frank’s younger son joined his father after finishing college and a stint in the Army. At one point in the mid 1960’s one aspect of their metal furniture business began to slow down leaving room for a unique but untested type of business.
On a serendipitous afternoon in 1968, Donald while delivering a metal furniture piece to one of his customers met Romana Kryzanowska at his customer’s home. Romana had needed a manufacturer for her apparatus as more and more teachers were arriving at her studio eager to learn Pilates from her and then needing apparatus to work on at home. It was this fortuitous meeting with Romana that opened a new line of business for Gratz Industries, located at that time in Long Island City, Queens - it was the birth of classical Pilates apparatus.
Special thanks to KPCA-Petaluma
Music credit: Summer Sidewalk by Audionautix
For more information about Gratz Industries: https://www.pilates-gratz.com
For more information about Darien Gold: https://www.dariengold.com
Theme music: Soul Blues Piano Shuffle by Boom Zoom