Street Piano

steet piano

A street piano is a piano placed in the street which passers-by are encouraged to play. The best known examples is the ‘Play Me, I’m Yours’ project by artist Luke Jerram. The concept originates quite by accident in the early 2000’s in Sheffield, England, where  there was a piano on the pavement on Sharrow Vale Road.

It was left outside temporarily because the owner could not get it up the steps into his new house. As a social experiment he attached a sign inviting passers by to play the piano for free. This offer was taken up by a great many people and the piano became a part of the local community.

Jerram’s ‘Play Me, I’m Your’s’ project was installed in cities around the world. He intended to challenge the prohibition of playing music in public places without special arrangement. It prompted members of the public to use the piano, regardless of skill and popularity. In 2007, Jerram installed 15 street pianos throughout Birmingham, United Kingdom, for the public to play.

Thirteen pianos have been installed in São Paulo. Jerram reported that many of those who stopped at the pianos had never played a real piano or even seen one. Thirty street pianos were set up across Sydney for the Sydney Festival 2009. A website was set up for the public to upload and share their films, photographs and stories of the pianos being played.

Thirty ‘Play Me, I’m Yours’-painted pianos were installed across London for members of the public to play. The painting on each piano was chosen to suit its location. Barcelona has twenty-three street pianos.

Play Me, I’m Yours, presented in New York City, brought sixty pianos to the center of commercial Manhattan, Brooklyn, Queens, The Bronx, and Staten Island. The pianos were placed at strategic locations throughout the five boroughs. For two-weeks in the summer of 2010, the pianos featured formal and impromptu concerts by students, tourists, children, nannies, lawyers, doctors, merchants, and artists in an open festival of music involving all elements of New York’s culturally diverse population.

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One Comment to “Street Piano”

  1. Very cool. I wonder if hand wipes are also provided.:)

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