Home / ArtArtists Beautify Outdoor Pianos Around the World to Bring Music to the Streets

Artists Beautify Outdoor Pianos Around the World to Bring Music to the Streets

Noticing a lack of interaction between strangers who passed each other everyday on the same streets, UK-based artist Luke Jerram was inspired to disrupt people's daily routines with spontaneous music and communication by installing outdoor pianos in public spaces. “The idea for Play Me, I'm Yours came from visiting my local launderette,” explains Jerram. “I saw the same people there each weekend and yet no one talked to one another. I suddenly realised 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.”

The project proved a huge success right from the start, when Jerram installed 15 pianos throughout the city of Birmingham for three weeks in 2008. An estimated 140,000 people played the pianos or listened to others as they played, sparking engagement with each other and the urban landscape. Since then, over 1,000 Play Me, I'm Yours pianos have been installed in 38 cities around the world, reaching a global audience of around 6 million people.

The street pianos, which are often painted with bright colors and striking designs by local artists, sit outside train stations, in city squares, near markets, and in other public spaces. Everyone, regardless of race, gender, age, or class, is invited to show off their skills on the instrument. With a steady flow of interaction between player, spectator, and city, the pianos bring together a community through self-expression and creativity.

If you're interested in bringing Play Me, I'm Yours to your city, check out the project's website to see how to get involved.

Above: Cobourg, Canada, 2014
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Toronto, Canada, 2014
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Denver, Colorado, USA, 2011
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Kiev, Ukraine, 2014
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Toronto, Canada, 2012
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Boston, Massachusetts, USA, 2013
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Paris, France, 2013
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Toronto, Canada, 2012
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Denver, Colorado, USA, 2011
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Boston, Massachusetts, USA, 2013
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Cobourg, Canada, 2013
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Toronto, Canada, 2014
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Melbourne, Australia, 2014
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Melbourne, Australia, 2014
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Play Me, I'm Yours website
Play Me, I'm Yours on Facebook
Luke Jerram's website
via [Daily Geek Show], [Bored Panda]

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