High up in the skyscraper known as 28 Liberty, (formerly Chase Manhattan Plaza), 50 artists are toiling away, each painting, and creating art on a unique canvas of ebony and ivory. Their 50 different ideas will inspire, amuse and bring pleasure to New Yorkers this summer when these pianos are placed outdoors around the five boroughs by arts non-profit Sing for Hope, and played by anyone and everyone who passes by.
The piano as we know it today was invented by Bartolomeo Cristofori, when he was employed by Ferdinando de’ Medici, as the Keeper of the Instruments. Cristofori is credited with the idea that, instead of plucking the strings like a harpsicord, little hammers ought to hit the strings, and thus the piano was born. Today, the world became a better place because of it. Think Bach, think Mozart, think Monk or Red Garland, or John Lennon.
Sing for Hope was founded more than a decade ago after the devastation of Hurricane Katrina by renowned opera sopranos Monica Yunus and Camille Zamora. It is a public art project that merges creative place-making with the organization’s mission of art for everybody.
“From the South Bronx and the Rockaways to Staten Island and Times Square, the Sing for Hope Pianos have become synonymous with summertime in New York City,” say Ms. Yunus and Zamora. “We are thrilled to bring these pianos to life at 28 Liberty as we prepare to fill our city with music, art, and community for a sixth year. We also are delighted that, after their time in the parks, the 2017 Sing for Hope Pianos will go on to permanent homes in our City’s public schools, opening creative doorways for students for years to come.
“Our collaboration with important arts organizations like Sing For Hope ensures that 28 Liberty will continue to play a vital role in the culture of Lower Manhattan,” said Erik Horvat, managing director, with Fosun Property, which owns the complex. “It is an honor to support Sing For Hope for the second year in a row as it fulfills its mission to provide arts resources and programming to the underserved in New York City.”
They launch on June 5th at 28 Liberty, and then are in the parks June 6th until the 25th.