18 Pianos, 18 Pianists, 17 Artists, 1,584 Keys Set for Kretzer Piano's KEYS TO THE CITIES Kick-Off, 11/1
After six long months of colorful creativity, a unique collaboration of sight and sound will be unveiled at last - so let the eye-dazzling and ear-pleasing harmonies begin.
Kathi Kretzer, founder of the Kretzer Piano Music Foundation, today announced that the much-anticipated KEYS TO THE CITIES Kick-Off Party will be held on Friday, November 1, from 7 to 9 p.m., at the Waterfront Lake Pavilion in downtown West Palm Beach.
At the fun-filled event, the Foundation will unveil 18 different baby grand and upright pianos, all of which have been whimsically designed, each with its own unique theme, by 17 extraordinary local artists.
A piano owned by the late baseball great Gary Carter has been redone by artist Frank Navarrete in all too fitting Mets motif and dubbed "The Kid." Artist Sharon Koskoffhas reimagined a jazzy-style Grand that she is calling "Knockin' at Heaven's Door," while Nadia Utto's piano has an intergalactic look that would float perfectly through the new Sandra Bullock flick, Gravity.
The art students at Watson B. Duncan Middle School and their teacher Courtney Hess have produced a funky "Zentangle Piano," artist Julie Beaumont's Spinet has a recognizable theme of Florida Wildlife, and Eduardo Mendieta's Console now sports a child's face and is titled, "Overlook."
Additional piano-painting artists include Liz Brice, Caron Bowman, Karen Chandler, Joseph Dzwill, Silvana Frontera, Carla Golembe, Emmanuel Gonzales, Eric Kucera, Holly Rutchey, Alicia Stamm and Amanda Turner, whose colorful creations run the visual gamut from traditional beauty to wildly offbeat.
The official unveiling on November 1 will also include an unforgettable performance by a one-time-only 18 Piano Orchestra with 18 distinguished pianists all playing together: Dr. Robin Arrigo, Ruo Balko, Sandra Baran, Shawn Berry, Jerry Crank, Susan Dahlberg, Copeland Davis, Terrence Dwarika, Jan Fulford, Linda Johnson, Pat Johnson, Linda Jordan, Kathi Kretzer, Monte Lambert, Laurie McDonald, Betsy McHugh, Janet Owens and Michael Yanette.
Tickets to attend are $100 each, and can be purchased by calling Kretzer Piano Music Foundation at 561.748.0036. The festive event will include Keys To The Cities Cocktails, hors d'oeuvres and a chance to meet and mingle with the artists, the pianists and other music-loving supporters.
Public Display & Play in Palm Beach County
From November 2-17, the 18 gorgeous pianos will be on public display throughout the county. Among the various locations where visitors can see - and even play! - the "artified" instruments are Arts Garage in Delray Beach, on Worth Avenue in Palm Beach, the Cultural Council headquarters in Lake Worth, Downtown At The Gardens in Palm Beach Gardens, Kretzer Piano in Jupiter, and at assorted spots in West Palm Beach, including City Center, CityPlace, Clematis Street by Palm Beach Dramaworks, the Kravis Center for the Performing Arts, the South Florida Science Center and Aquarium and the Waterfront.
"Professional pianists and music groups are scheduled to perform concerts on the pianos while they are on display, but the most fun will be in children (up to age 94) sitting down and plunking away. Our main message is that everyone is invited and everyone can play," says Kretzer, who developed the program after learning of similar successful campaigns in London and New York City.
"This KEYS TO THE CITIES campaign fits perfectly with the mission of the Kretzer Piano Music Foundation, which is to provide music lessons and performing opportunities to everyone, especially underprivileged children," she adds.
A "piano buddy" at each site will cover the instruments at night and during inclement weather. At the conclusion of the public display period, all of the pianos will be donated to local children's charities and community organizations where they will continue to enrich the lives of people for years to come.
The 18 used pianos were donated for this campaign by the Kretzer Piano Music Foundation and by Carlos Aquino, Jackie Badome (in memory of her husband Frank),the family of Gary Carter, Cheryl Harrigan, Nancy Sale Johnson, the Lighthouse for the Blind, Opportunity, Inc., Sheryl Purcell, Paula Rodgers, Jamie Romeo, Karen Sade, Tony Tamaccio and Jan Young.
For more information and a chance to glimpse some of the 18 designed pianos, check out "Keys to the Cities" on Facebook.
Pictured: "The Kid" - the Gary Carter Piano designed by Frank Navarrete.