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Painted piano to liven up downtown

Erika Anderson tries out the piano the downtown BIA will have painted by local artists and plunked downtown for public use. - Renée Andor/The Mirror
Erika Anderson tries out the piano the downtown BIA will have painted by local artists and plunked downtown for public use.
— image credit: Renée Andor/The Mirror

Downtown Campbell River will soon be home to a brightly coloured piano, which the public can use for free.

The Downtown BIA came up with the idea to have a piano downtown after seeing the same thing in Austin, Texas, and other places in the United States.

“It should be a neat thing,” said Erika Anderson, chair of the BIA. “We’re always looking for new things to try to add some colour and some vibrancy (to downtown).”

This piano isn’t just any old piano either; it will be painted by a group of artists under the supervision of local artist John Bailey, during Art Appreciation Day at Spirit Square. The event happens from 11 a.m. - 3 p.m. this Saturday.

Bailey said although the theme is unplanned, the piano will be bright.

“All I’m trying to do is get colour and people together, and wherever it goes is basically up to who does it,” explained Bailey.

The piano will be tuned up in time for Art Appreciation Day so that musicians are able to play it during the event. And within the next couple of weeks it will be placed downtown…somewhere.

During days with nice weather, the piano will be on display in various downtown locations, and Anderson encourages people to keep an eye out for it – and for musicians to play a tune or two.

“I hope that some skilled musicians will come downtown and sit down for a while,” she said.

Each night it will be brought in to avoid vandalism, and Anderson says she hopes people will respect the piano.

“There is always a chance that it will be vandalized – that’s always a possibility – but we’re just going to have faith in people,” said Anderson.

Anderson also said it may not be perfectly in tune all the time.

“Probably with being moved, and changing air and moisture conditions, it’s not likely to be in tune for very long,” explained Anderson. “But this is just for fun.”

The piano cost $75 from the ReStore, and was paid for by Remax Realty. And the paint was bought by Coho Books.

Anderson says the main aim of the inexpensive project is to showcase art in the downtown area.

“It’ll be a nice piece of public art for the rest of the summer,” said Anderson.

The BIA plans to ‘play things by ear’ in regards to the piano’s future.

 

 

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