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Play Me Again Pianos Unveils New Public Piano at the Dunwoody Nature Center

The event is free and open to the public and everyone is encouraged to play the piano, named “Claude.”

Play Me Again Pianos Unveils New Public Piano at the Dunwoody Nature Center

Play Me Again Pianos, a nonprofit aspiring to make metro Atlanta more musical through 88 public piano installations, will cut the ribbon on its newest donated piano Saturday, May 22, at 3:00 p.m. at the Dunwoody Nature Center. The event is free and open to the public and everyone is encouraged to play the piano, named "Claude," after the ribbon-cutting ceremony.

"Street pianos and public pianos inspire people to connect with each other in ways that were once common, but increasingly rare. By adding our pianos to the landscape throughout the metropolitan area, we hope to nurture that connection into an evolution of Atlanta's culture, community and the arts," said Jason Brett, co-founder of Play Me Again Pianos.

The eventual 88 pianos represent the 88 piano keys. Claude, installation number 24, replaces Bennett who was unveiled at the Nature Center in March, 2017. Bennett has been delighting patrons in an unexpected setting for the last four years. But, as will happen to outdoor pianos, Bennett has become a challenge to keep playable. His retirement makes way for Claude and ensures that, along with Millie at the Donaldson-Bannister Farm, Dunwoody continues to have two Play Me Again Pianos available for the public to play.

Every public piano installation is a collaboration. The piano that became Claude was donated to Play Me Again Pianos by Dale and Patti Greig. A project sponsored by Walton High School Visual Art Teacher, Kathleen Petka, that began before the pandemic, Amy Hattori, Co-President of the National Art Honor Society (NAHS) for 2018-19, created a design for it based on Claude Monet's iconic water lilies series. NAHS 2019-20 Co-Presidents Aliza Qureshi and Carey Thomas brought Hattori's design to life by coordinating the prep work, painting and sealing of the piano.

Claude will live permanently under the pavilion along Wildcat Creek, across from the Meadow waiting for you to play with him. Unlike a portable instrument, it's not practical to pick up an acoustic piano and play it among the trees -- but now you can, and it's a breathtaking experience.

Play Me Again Pianos has also placed pianos in Atlanta at The Woodruff Arts Center, Ponce City Market, and Atlantic Station as well as in Alpharetta, Brookhaven, Chamblee, East Cobb, Roswell and the Serenbe Art Farm Community. Additional pianos are in various stages of planning and development.

With the increasing rarity of home pianos, public access to the instruments enriches the entire community, but donations to charities for non-essential services have been crushingly low during the pandemic. Contributions right now can make the difference between a charity surviving or closing its doors. If you love the thought of having pianos available to the public in your community, please donate today, while it's on your mind, to help keep them playable. It's never been needed more. For information about the volunteer opportunities, the impact of Play Me Again Pianos, and a link to donate, visit www.PlayMeAgainPianos.org.


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