05 June 2011

Sing For Hope's Pop-Up Pianos 2011: A Preview

I got a text message from my friend Marc yesterday morning, saying he was painting an upright piano downtown and that I should visit him. He was working in a huge corporate building, so I was prepared to see him painting a piano all by himself in a cavernous lobby. When he led me through the door to his work space, I was standing in a room filled with pianos – uprights, baby grands, and grands – all hand painted.

Rococo confetti

Scott Taylor?

Drip and sparkles


If you live in New York, you might remember that there were 60 pianos placed all over the city for a couple of weeks last summer. Well, it's happening again this year, brought to us by Sing for Hope – an organization that brings artists together to volunteer their time for the benefit of the local community (schools, hospitals, etc.). This particular initiative is called Pop-Up Pianos, and will run from June 18th until July 2nd. Their vision is "that all New Yorkers – from Rockaway to Riverdale, Stapleton to Sunset Park – have access to the arts." Watch this trailer of sorts --

Here are shots of Marc's --


Marc painting jellyfish

Almost done

Fucking beautiful, no? Also stunning: Here are two of Chris's (one of Marc's best friends, and a friend of mine as well) --



This might be Chris's piano's keys? Half of them?

Marc's paint and inspiration

(See the rest here.)

First of all, I've never been in the midst of so many pianos before (there are 88 this year).* This – along with (1) Knowing exactly what these pianos in various stages of transformation were planned for; and (2) That I've been playing for 24 years/pianos have great significance to me – made yesterday afternoon the most overwhelming thing that has happened to me all year.

Be on the lookout come June 18th; on that day you'll be able to see which artist's piano is where on the map on the site (Marc is hoping his goes to Coney Island). You can also follow them on Twitter for news. Man, I haven't felt this strongly about a local nonprofit in ages. Sing For Hope, this is going to be awesome.


For more (all over the place) perusing:
A piano-related video I made a while ago
A crazy discussion on major & minor key on AskMeFi
Antiquated Giant, a mural Chris painted a couple of years ago
BeyoncĂ©'s new Run The World (Girls) video – Marc painted a bunch of the posters in the background

* Coincidence that there are 88 keys on a piano, and 88 pianos this year? I don't think so ;)
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