Bringing people together through music

The Glasgow Piano Project CIC owes its roots to a daydream of founder Tom Binns, who had the sudden urge to bring a choir together around an acoustic piano in Glasgow’s Kelvingrove Park to sing a gospel song he’d rewritten.

Driven by the prospect of bringing people together through music, he started Glasgow Piano City, with the aim of encouraging and facilitating new appreciation of acoustic pianos in Glasgow and beyond.

Now known as The Piano Project, the social enterprise strives to create opportunities for people of all ages and abilities to play the highest quality acoustic pianos through events and activities.

Instruments are also loaned out to venues across the city for performances, events, conferences, festivals, workshops or private occasions.

Their Pianos on Prescription, supported by Awards for All funding in 2016, offers free piano tuition to those most in need as a means of increasing health and well-being. The initiative supports people who have to cope with isolation, loneliness and long-term health conditions.

Playing it by Ear, another of Piano City’s ongoing projects, sets up acoustic pianos in public parks and spaces, offering free, informal piano lessons to anyone who shows an interest. The lessons have been shown to increase people’s confidence by opening up a creative avenue for expression and providing a public pivot for socialising. Over the course of a year Playing it by Ear was able to provide over 100 hours of free tuition to 50 people.

The Open Lids project aims to engender a greater sense of confidence and well-being by providing free-to-play pianos at a range of venues across Glasgow. Notable participants in the project include the city’s famed King Tut’s Wah Wah Hut, the Glasgow Royal Concert Hall and the Riverside Museum, all of which have pianos open to the public on site during opening hours.

Late in 2017, Piano City entered into a partnership with Galgael and KibbleWorks to develop a new range of high-quality products made from stripped out parts from acoustic upright & grand pianos, creating employment and reducing waste.

Organisations or members of the public are encouraged to donate old pianos, which will be refurbished and used as part of Piano Project’s ongoing initiatives. You can donate through the contributions page on their website.

The above article first published on senscot.net.