E news for June 23rd
We know that this summer Springfield, Massachusetts has a program where they have placed “street pianos” in three locations around their downtown for anyone to sit down and play. One of the first organizations to have the idea to do this Play Me, I’m Yours’ was first commissioned in Birmingham, UK in 2008. It all started with 15 pianos located across the city for three weeks. Since that time more than 1500 street pianos have been placed in 50 cities and it is estimated that they have been played and listened to by more than 10 million people worldwide.
International artist and creator of Play me, I’m Yours’ Luke Jerram said, “The idea for this project came from visiting my local launderette. I saw the same people there each weekend and yet no one talked to one another. I suddenly realized that within a city, there must be hundreds of these invisible communities, regularly spending time with one another in silence. Placing a piano into the space was my solution to this problem, acting as a catalyst for conversation and changing the dynamics of a space.
Play Me I’m Yours’ generally is presented in a city for 2-3 weeks, after which time many of the pianos are donated to schools and community groups. The pianos have enticed many hidden musicians out of the wood work. Apparently there are thousands of pianists out there who don’t have regular access to a piano and this has provided them access to a wonderful musical instrument and has given the musicians the opportunity to share their talents.
This year the street pianos from Play Me, I’m Yours’ will appear in Munich, Bristol, Grand Geneve, Paris, Norfolk, VA, Augsburg, Germany, and Florence, SC.