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Introducing piano to the Amazon #1339738
01/03/10 11:33 AM
01/03/10 11:33 AM
Joined: May 2001
Posts: 11,077
Philadelphia/South Jersey
Rich Galassini Online content OP
Platinum Subscriber
Rich Galassini  Online Content OP
Platinum Subscriber
Joined: May 2001
Posts: 11,077
Philadelphia/South Jersey
One of our staff has recently been corresponding with a reporter. The emails began with questions about a particular piano, A Lagonda upright. As the email conversations progressed it seemed that this reporter had stumbled on a young man who right now is carrying a piano through parts of the Amazon to introduce piano to people who have never heard or seen one.

Here is a short synopsis as it was written to us:

Quote


I have recently returned from the Amazon where I was researching to made a documentary on Amazonian medicine. Whilst I was there I met an extraordinary young man from Chile, who has just graduated from The University of Science and Musical Arts.


He is travelling with an upright piano across the Amazonian Rain forest, for the joy of sharing with the geographically isolated people, an instrument that is usually related with academia.
To move a complex and heavy piece such as this, in a hostile environment it is a task only for the brave at hart.


Alejandro does not have economic support of any kind, only what he managed to save up for himself with a summer job before his departure.
He does not ask for money for his teachings because in his opinion however little money he may ask for, will immediately discard some of the most deprive children, the ones he wants to reach out to the most.


He started his adventure on April the 24th in Lima, where he brought the piano.


Thousands of people across Peru has benefited by listening to Alejandro play as well as enchanting them through his knowledge as a passionate teacher.


From the beginning the piano has dictated the pace of the journey. Now as the rainy season has started the Lagonda refused to go any further and had to take Refugio in land.


Currently this reporter is trying to gain the funds to do a documentary on the adventure. I am trying to figure out how to help. Does anyone have any ideas?

Here are a couple of photos.

The Piano arrives in a village:

[Linked Image]

Children play:

[Linked Image]



Rich Galassini
Cunningham Piano Co.
Phila, Pa.
(215) 991-0834 direct line
rich@cunninghampiano.com
Subscribe to our YouTube channel for great content every week:
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Re: Introducing piano to the Amazon [Re: Rich Galassini] #1339755
01/03/10 12:18 PM
01/03/10 12:18 PM
Joined: Jan 2007
Posts: 7,439
torrance, CA
turandot Offline
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turandot  Offline
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torrance, CA
This is eerily similar to Werner Herzog's movie Fitzcarraldo. Is your man in Lima intending to go into the rubber business? grin

Seriously, this is a great story. Here are some suggestions.

1. Use your own working relationship with the Philadelphia PBS outlet to gauge their own (or PBS's) interest level in the project. As an alternative, check with cable networks such as National Geographic.

2. Seek donations here. I'm poor, but I'm in as long as individual member donations are not lumped and presented as a donation from PW itself, rather than its membership.

3. Measure the cost/benefit to Cunningham Piano of potentially becoming a corporate sponsor.

4. Get Frank B to do the same analysis.



Will Johnny Come Marching Home?
The fate of the modern wartime soldier
Re: Introducing piano to the Amazon [Re: turandot] #1340012
01/03/10 05:46 PM
01/03/10 05:46 PM
Joined: May 2006
Posts: 277
Portland, OR
S
Seneca Offline
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Seneca  Offline
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Posts: 277
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Go to the Werner Herzog website (www.wernerherzog.com) and contact his production company. There is a huge traditon in the film industry of established directors/producers offering various kinds of informal and formal (and sometimes substantial) help to talented newcomers who pique their interest for some reason. The Fitzcarraldo parallel should be enough of a hook to get that attention. I hope that's the parallel and not Aguirre The Wrath of God.

Also, if you can associate a German producer with the project you can usually get some funding from the German government.

Huge caveat--if the guys you are trying to help are dreamers and don't know their sh it, they WILL get cut off at the knees.

Good luck!

Re: Introducing piano to the Amazon [Re: Seneca] #1340025
01/03/10 06:04 PM
01/03/10 06:04 PM
Joined: May 2001
Posts: 10,933
Maryland/DC/No. VA
Steve Cohen Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member
Steve Cohen  Offline
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I saw the title to this thread and it scared the S--t out of me!

I thought Amazon.com threw their hat in the acoustic piano market! laugh



Piano Industry Consultant- http://www.linkedin.com/pub/steve-cohen/6/b92/b80

Consultant & Contributing Editor - Acoustic & Digital Piano Buyer

Jasons Music
Maryland/DC/No. VA
Since 1937.

www.jasonsmusic.com
My postings, unless stated otherwise, are my personal opinions, not those of my clients.
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Re: Introducing piano to the Amazon [Re: Steve Cohen] #1340157
01/03/10 09:48 PM
01/03/10 09:48 PM
Joined: May 2006
Posts: 323
Vancouver
birchy Offline
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birchy  Offline
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Posts: 323
Vancouver
This is been around for a while, Steve, but I guess has not taken off if you haven't heard of it...

Amazon.com piano sales (a selection from many available)

Re: Introducing piano to the Amazon [Re: birchy] #1340200
01/03/10 11:36 PM
01/03/10 11:36 PM
Joined: Nov 2009
Posts: 110
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meowmix52 Offline
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meowmix52  Offline
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Posts: 110
Why doesn't he just bring a portable keyboard?


Re: Introducing piano to the Amazon [Re: meowmix52] #1340415
01/04/10 10:30 AM
01/04/10 10:30 AM
Joined: May 2001
Posts: 11,077
Philadelphia/South Jersey
Rich Galassini Online content OP
Platinum Subscriber
Rich Galassini  Online Content OP
Platinum Subscriber
Joined: May 2001
Posts: 11,077
Philadelphia/South Jersey
Originally Posted by meowmix52
Why doesn't he just bring a portable keyboard?



Meow,

I don't think there is electricity in many of these villages, but also I am sure he wants to introduce PIANO to them, not a keyboard.

Thank you for the suggestions. I will do a little woek on this. Any other suggestions are welcome please.



Rich Galassini
Cunningham Piano Co.
Phila, Pa.
(215) 991-0834 direct line
rich@cunninghampiano.com
Subscribe to our YouTube channel for great content every week:
https://www.youtube.com/user/CunninghamPiano
Re: Introducing piano to the Amazon [Re: Rich Galassini] #1341177
01/05/10 05:59 AM
01/05/10 05:59 AM
Joined: Jun 2009
Posts: 1,607
California
4evrBeginR Offline
1000 Post Club Member
4evrBeginR  Offline
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Posts: 1,607
California
At first I also thought the online merchant Amazon was going to sell pianos! Oh, the Amazon. It's not very practical with no piano technician to regularly the thing. Seems he's moving it around a lot, so it's probably way out of tune; wouldn't it be just a box that makes noise?

I think a portable keyboard is better. Just have to also given them a solar panel for electricity. Some villagers in the Gobi desert are getting portable solar panels that could power a 60-watt light bulb. That should be sufficient at least when it's not raining.


Art is never finished, only abandoned. - da Vinci
Re: Introducing piano to the Amazon [Re: 4evrBeginR] #1341377
01/05/10 01:35 PM
01/05/10 01:35 PM
Joined: Jan 2007
Posts: 7,439
torrance, CA
turandot Offline
7000 Post Club Member
turandot  Offline
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Joined: Jan 2007
Posts: 7,439
torrance, CA
Originally Posted by 4evr88keys
At first I also thought the online merchant Amazon was going to sell pianos! Oh, the Amazon. It's not very practical with no piano technician to regularly the thing. Seems he's moving it around a lot, so it's probably way out of tune; wouldn't it be just a box that makes noise?

I think a portable keyboard is better. Just have to also given them a solar panel for electricity. Some villagers in the Gobi desert are getting portable solar panels that could power a 60-watt light bulb. That should be sufficient at least when it's not raining.


The way I read Rich's report, the idealistic/enterprising/little of each (take your pick) young man from Chile is not attempting to place a piano or pianos in villages, or to introduce any practical solution to piano music-making in remote areas. He is simply creating awareness of ??? by concertizing and doing a little teaching in each locale before he moves on.

As for the impracticality of the task, again the Fitzcarraldo parallel is striking. In the movie the idealistic/enterprising/little of each (take your pick) young Irishman from Peru is seeking to build a European style grand opera house in remote Iquitos by going deep into the Amazon to tap its rubber trees for commercial gain. The high point of ?idealistic? impracticality in the movie occurs when a steamboat (very similar to the one in Rich's photograph) must be pushed and pulled on skids uphill over rapids to link to a higher elevation river. The natives are enlisted for this task, much as the natives apparently have been enlisted to tote the Lagonda into the next village (assuming Rich's photograph is an accurate representation of what's going on.) An interesting side-note on the movie is that Herzog insisted that the steamboat-over-rapids sequence not be tricked up in any way, but actually performed. The difficulty of doing that caused him to run out of funds, putting the movie on hold until he could find further funding. Yet another idealist! grin

Whether the young pianist from Chile or the documentary film-maker who is corresponding with Cunningham Piano is operating out of pure altruism or career considerations really isn't that important as long as the natives aren't taken for a ride or physically harmed by performing a back-breaking task. Even if PBS or National Geographic were to fund the musical journey and/or a documentary based on it, their motives would not be pure altruism either. Nothing wrong with a win/win if no one else loses. That's something that I'm sure Rich understands. wink



Will Johnny Come Marching Home?
The fate of the modern wartime soldier
Re: Introducing piano to the Amazon [Re: turandot] #1342048
01/06/10 03:54 AM
01/06/10 03:54 AM
Joined: Feb 2007
Posts: 3,946
Banned
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theJourney Offline
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theJourney  Offline
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The piano and other classical intruments are not unknown everywhere in the amazon.
We hosted some of these kids who are continuing a 400 year old tradition when they were on their European tour and they were very good!

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/8206836.stm

It was quite a feeling to hear baroque music played so " alive ".


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