So, Boris is planning to put 31 pianos around London; part of the Sing London and City of London Festival, is Luke Jerram's 'Play Me I'm Yours' project. A quick glance over the various reports in the media shows a pretty mixed reaction, but I have to say I love this idea!
I read about in the paper on the train home last night and it really brought a smile to my face. It's the sort of thing that, as a nation, we don't always manage to do very well (or at least very often); there's something celebratory and spontaneous that we just can't seem to get the hang of, least not for music and other things considered by so many to be 'trivial', 'luxury' or 'unimportant'. It's been tried in a number of other countries and, unsurprisingly, worked really well there. As far as I'm concerned, music is like sunshine, it just makes everything better. When the sun is out (as it is right now, lovely) everyone is happier. Same with music. What could be nicer than hearing music in public spaces everywhere you go? Than watching children messing around on a piano and playing together? Than watching someone totally unassuming creep up to a piano and astounding everyone?
It will only work if people get on board though.I've copies just a few of the comments on the Times article below:
'30 seconds before someone takes a baseball bat to them. Such is the cultural instinct of the baseline of youth today, alas.'
'How about placing 31 'Soup kitchens' about the capital. That's more in keeping with todays social climate.... "The organisers believe the scheme will encourage trust" .........more likely to encourage theft ( of the pianos, that is! )'
'What a Joke, how long will they last ? a week or a few days.'
If we are so set in this opinion of 'the youth of today' we might as well all pack up and go home. I have every confidence that the pianos will remain intact and even well cared for and often used! I can't wait to be wandering round some of those places and see people enjoying them and have a little joy and fun injected into my day.
One of the first things I did on googling was check where our nearest one will be in East London (I had hopes of trying to organise a big singalong, purely be means of this blog, our website and facebook) but the nearest are Liverpool St or Southwark. Anyway, if you are reading and fancy checking it out do let let us know as I for one would love to go! (Alternatively, let's petition to get one in Newham!)