Tinkling in the streets



A city-wide public art installation of 15 painted pianos will be placed on Cambridge streets for two weeks, as part of the University’s Festival of Ideas. Decorated by local artists and charities, the art invites the community to make music together.

The beauty of a piano is that anyone can sit down, press a key and make a noise. I want everyone to give it a go!
    —Ruth Hardie

For two weeks from yesterday (Monday 22 October), 15 pianos destined for the scrap heap will be given a new lease of life – as public art. Revived by the Faculty of Music for the University’s Festival of Ideas, and decorated by local artists and charities, the pianos will be placed in communal spaces around the city as an open invitation to anyone and everyone who fancies tinkling the ivories.

The University’s Faculty of Music are presenting a Cambridge stage of the artist Luke Jerram’s global street piano project Play Me, I’m Yours for the Festival of Ideas. Initially launched in London in 2008, the public artwork project has now reached over two million people worldwide – more than 700 pianos have already been installed in cities across the globe, from New York to Sydney.

A total of 15 pianos will be installed right across the city, from the world famous centre to some of the city’s outlying communities.

One piano will sneak into tourist snaps outside the University’s Senate House, while the sound of public music-making will drift across the Mill pond from another on Silver Street bridge.

But pianos will also be located in the heart of Cambridge communities, with a piano in local shopping precinct Arbury Court, another entertaining dog-walkers’ at Cherry Hinton Hall, and even one outside legendary local venue The Junction – giving punters the opportunity for impromptu post-gig jamming.

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Image: Local artists preparing their pianos
Credit: Cambridge University/FLACK

Reproduced courtesy of the University of Cambridge 


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