Posts Tagged ‘LA+ Touristy Stuff’
…and the Angeleno-Swiss’ Home away from Home…
We’d like to welcome guest blogger, Ms. Imogen Reed – featuring a story about the amazingly fascinating “Play Me, I’m Yours” Art & Music project, which currently delights Angelenos and visitors alike!Thank You for your contribution, Imogen!
Street Piano Project Reaches LA via Geneva
There is a meeting place where Geneva meets Los Angeles and art meets music. If you didn’t catch the ‘Play Me, I’m Yours’ artwork in Geneva and haven’t yet caught up with it in LA you may well be wondering what kind of a junction that could possibly be and how to get there. Read on…
Luke Jerram is a British artist. His art project began touring four years ago and has since touched two million people. As you read this, the number of participants is rising by the minute, not to mention the numbers of works or keys played. The work involves pianos and the project has 30 in LA at the moment. Local communities were invited to customize the pianos and passersby are now invited to ‘Play Me, I’m Yours’, a slogan that is written on each and every one of them.
Jouez, Je Suis A Vous
Just last June it was ‘Jouez, Je Suis A Vous’, when twenty pianos were placed around Geneva as part of the Fete de la Musique. They were placed by the lake, the Floral Clock, the Grand Theatre and in parks and squares throughout the city. Each piano has its own blog where content can be shared. The Geneva pages show a city genuinely pleased by the event. Many seemed to be adults who could play well but just hadn’t for some time. Suddenly they had time and the opportunity. Pedestrians were enchanted, stopped passing and stopped to sit down and listen.
One child played as a tram went by. A gifted man played to perfection by the lake as a boats went by. Passengers in taxis, tourists in carhire vehicles as well as local residents and cyclists looked on. Sometimes there was singing or other instruments joined in. Some chose fast catchy jazz pieces, some chose slow, moving classical works. People stopped to see what was going on, listened and joined in. That was Jerram’s intention. To provide a focal point around which communities would gather with the pianos becoming “a catalyst for conversation and changing the dynamics of a space”.
It worked. The project has been so successful that it has now travelled to 22 locations; many are in the UK but also include Brazil, Hungary, Malta, the Netherlands, Spain and locations in Australia and the US.
Did you play in Geneva? Get yourself to one of the thirty pianos in LA and play again. They are located in a number of downtown locations, including two at Bunker Hill, one in Chinatown, one at LA Live and one in Union Square. Then there are a number spread throughout the rest of the city and you can find out where your nearest one is on http://streetpianos.com/la2012/
Thirty pianists opened the event on 12 April by simultaneously playing the first prelude from Bach’s Well-Tempered Clavier. Then they handed them over to the public for its three-week turn. There is a free event ‘Love Letters to LA’ on 26 April at the piano situated at the Egyptian Theatre, Hollywood Boulevard, where local artists will chose and perform a song that represents Los Angeles to them, unplugged.
So where does the art come in? Is this not a music project? The project has brought about an interesting fusion. The Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra that has brought the project to LA has been busy commissioning organizations, individuals and designers to customize the pianos with their artwork. One piano by muralist Kent Twitchell marks Jeffrey Kahane’s fifteen years with the LA Chamber Orchestra, another bears mermaids and mountains by local artist Raoul de la Sota, another is colourfully decorated by an arts project that works to try to prevent students from dropping out of high school and another was decorated by the Braille Institute. The very preparation of the pianos called upon communities to work together and it is this that has excited Jerram about the brevity of the LA event.
Besides, it is the effect of the project that matters, not quibbling over categories. Public art plays a vital role in cities, whether it is the Jet d’Eau in Geneva or the letters of Hollywood in LA. So maybe you can’t play for toffee but fancy a go, or maybe you have been playing for years? Maybe you can think of something to play then post on the website that will put the Angeleno-Swiss community on the Street piano map? Get down there, join in. Enjoy!
- Play This Piano (franklinavenue.blogspot.com)
- “Play Me, I’m Yours” (keepingsane.com)
- Pianos Scattered Across SoCal For Any Member Of The Public To Play (losangeles.cbslocal.com)
Hanspeter Danuser and lovely wife Amelie-Claire von Platen (web), our good friends and supporters from St. Moritz, are at the tail-end of their 90-day “Honeymoon-in-a-camper-adventure”, (re-)Discovering the West and blogging about it on www.suedostschweiz.ch.
What better way to rise and shine “The Swiss way” on this glorious Sunday morning along the Santa Barbara Coast!
Welcome to southern California, Hanspeter and Amelie-Claire – you are our “Honorary Angeleno-Swiss“
Did you recently move here from Switzerland?
Are you in Los Angeles for vacation or here on business?
Either way, Welcome to Los Angeles, our “Home away from Home“, and have fun discovering our exciting City!
The Angeleno-Swiss community and LA’s Mayor hope you enjoy your stay, be it for business, pleasure or a little of both!
Whether you’re at the Beach in Venice or Santa Monica, on the Westside, in (West)Hollywood, in the Valley or Downtown – there’s SO MUCH to experience in this Great City. Be sure to get your personal copy of the Los Angeles Visitors Guide by LA, Inc. – one of the BEST resources to discover LA.
If you have any questions about Los Angeles, be it as a visitor or recent “import” from Switzerland – please don’t hesitate posting them here, on our twitter feed or on our facebook page: a member of the Swiss Community will gladly help, or direct you to where you can find an answer.
The Angeleno-Swiss Community hosts various events of interest all over town on a regular basis:
The Swiss-American Chamber of Commerce hosts monthly dinner events at the Beverly Hills Hotel where prominent people from Government, Business, Art & Entertainment get together to listen to featured speakers and presentations related to Swiss-American relations.
The Creative Swiss Community of Los Angeles has a facebook home moderated by the Consul General, and its aim is to bring together the vast community of Creative Swiss living in LA in periodic showcase receptions.
For a (not comprehensive) listing of Swiss activities in LA, check out our Angeleno-Swiss Community Calendar!
What’s new in LA:
The Swiss Center Los Angeles is a unique Swiss Made Marketing Platform, created to represent, assist and showcase Swiss Interests conducting business in Southern California.
While operating on a volunteer-driven “virtual” basis during the formative stages, the proponents are hoping to create a permanent presence in the near future in the form of a Concierge-Lounge-Like Business Center, with meeting space and temporary offices the prestigious Pacific Design Center in West Hollywood, available to its local members and visiting guests from Switzerland.
The RED BUILDING, a soon-to-be-opened addition to the Pacific Design Center campus, will create a highly visible symbol in the Heart of LA, and a consistent use of this facility to present Swiss Events of any kind will contribute in making this a de-facto “Epicenter of Swissness in Southern California”.
You will see – after a while Los Angeles will feel like “Little Switzerland“!
Enjoy LA & have FUN!