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Winn Brook Music Teacher Takes Piano to the “Streets”

Winn Brook Music Teacher Karyn Alzayer was chosen as one of 60 artists to decorate 60 pianos placed around public spaces in Boston and Cambridge with the invitation to look and, please, touch.

Karyn Alzayer decorated piano; Photo-MJ Keeler Photography The art installation called, “Play Me, I’m Yours”, conceived by British artist Luke Jerram, has been touring internationally since 2008. Jerram came up with the idea to bring community together by having the pianos available for people to look at and play. More than 1,400 pianos have been installed in 50 cities, according to the event website.

This year, “Street Pianos Boston” joins the cities of Mesa, AZ; Singapore, Florence, SC; Grand Genève; Paris; Aberdeen; and Munich in the placement of decorated pianos, and is sponsored here by the Celebrity Series of Boston. The pianos are available for viewing and playing September 23 to October 10.

Artists got their pianos at the end of July, and they had just over a month to complete their task, “I was there in the studio pretty much every day, working almost 40 hours a week throughout that time,” says Alzayer.  When not teaching music at Winn Brook, Alzayer works as a henna artist, and says she wanted to use henna-style designs on her piano, “I didn’t use actual henna, which is a plant-based dye, but I did traditional henna-style designs with acrylic paint, applying it in one of the same ways henna is traditionally applied.” The pianos used for the project were at the end of their musical lives, and are going out with style, “It’s a good way to say goodbye to lots of decommissioned pianos donated by local people,” says Alzayer.

Karyn Alzayer at her decorated piano; Photo-MJ Keeler Photography The piano installation was previously in Boston in 2013. Alzayer says she was not ready at that time to take on such a big project, but decided this year she was ready and applied, “I was thrilled when I was accepted as one of the 60 artists,” she says. “Our goal is to bring people together through art and music. Each piano says “Play Me, I’m Yours” as an invitation for anyone to interact with the pianos.”

Alzayer’s piano is located on the Greenway: Rowes Wharf Plaza at High St, Downtown. 

Karyn Alzayer decorated piano; Photo-MJ Keeler Photography  Karyn Alzayer decorated piano; Photo-MJ Keeler Photography  Karyn Alzayer at her decorated piano; Photo-MJ Keeler Photography