It takes a village to produce NYC ™s largest annual public art project, from our key supporters at City Hall and NYC Parks, to our fabulous PIANO BUDDIES, to our brilliant VOLUNTEER ARTISTS, to our movers and logistics teams. Among the most important ,villagers involved are the tireless members of our Tuner Team. This crew of unsung heroes puts in many, many hours (and miles) traveling from piano to piano, doing repairs, and keeping all 50 instruments in top shape.
The 2016 SFH Pianos Tuner Team consists of professional technicians Matthew Onigman, Nick Proctor, Sanju Sabastian, and Christina Scroggins. They started their work in the dark days of winter, when the unpainted pianos first arrived in the Pianos Studio, and before any of the artists even arrived to begin their work. And they ™ll still be caring for these pianos with their first official tuning in the fall, when each SFH Piano is delivered to its permanent home in an NYC public schools.
Earlier this week, Matthew shared these words, which speak to the heart of the program:
,I get to one of these beautiful pianos, and it creates a pocket where everyone is happy. There is a community where nobody is excluded. I have seen business executives applauding a homeless person’s impromptu performance. I have seen people of all races, religions, sexual orientation, and worldviews come together to celebrate in the moment of art and music. They join hands, dance and sing, laugh and even hug. People who were complete strangers become friends and siblings, if only for a moment.
I get to be a part of a project that is Art For All. There is no race, religion, class, gender or orientation to the word All. I am part of something that brings a little light into millions of lives. This is the true fight for peace. It is not a physical fight with people. It is struggling to make pianos play in the most ridiculous and harsh environment, not for the sake of the pianos, but to give a moment of community and joy.