Piano City 2015

For those of you who follow me on Instagram, you will know that a couple of weeks ago on another sunny Sunday afternoon, I went to the last day of Piano City Milano. This is a a three day event held every year with all types of piano concerts spread across the city! There are concerts held in parks, trams, houses, gardens, Piazza’s and museums to name just a few locations!  There is something for everyone with everything from classical, jazz and pop music to baroque and electronic! Not only is the music fantastic and all concerts are free, it is a great way to explore the city and discover new places!

For example last year, my friend and I went to a concert in the beautiful gardens of Villa Reale, which is the heart of the event and known as Piano Giardino (Piano Garden).  So naturally this year, I took my friends who were visiting there, to listen to some light Jazz and take a well needed break from all the walking we had been doing that weekend!

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The beautiful Villa Reale

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We listened to pianist Alberto Tafuri play homage to Neapolitan musician Pino Daniele.  A large crowd had gathered (luckily we found space on the grass to sit!) and we spent an idyllic hour listening to him play some beautiful pieces! You can hear a short clip of one on my Instagram page.

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There were lots of piano’s to have a little play on – all painted and decorated in funky ways!

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I especially loved this one!

 

Hope you are all having a great weekend!

Anna

Turn up the Music!

Last week I spent a whole day being irrationally annoyed and for the most ridiculous of reasons.  I would say I am a very optimistic happy person, but I have learnt that I can be irritated by the most obscure things! Last week it was because my headphones broke!  Yes….that’s all!  It is not the first time the same thing has caused me so much annoyance…last year on my overnight flight from New Orleans to London another pair broke and I had to spend the entire flight using the awful ones they give you for free – you know the crackly ones which never stay in your ears and are just so uncomfortable!

I do realise how silly it is to get so angst up about such a minuscule ‘problem’ but it made me think, why is it this annoys me so much?  Like when I forget my iPod, or can’t find anything good to listen to on the radio?  Don’t get me wrong, I also love talking to my friends (or strangers on the metro for that matter) and sometimes I just love sitting quietly, listening to the world around me or eves dropping on other people’s conversations! (Hehe!) But for the majority of the time whilst I travel around the city for work or am on a train or plane or driving somewhere, or cleaning my house, or working at home, or cooking…what I most enjoy is listening to my favourite songs, or having a singing session or dancing around like a lunatic!

I wasn’t one of those typical British teenagers who grew up listening to Backstreet Boys or Take That! I started liking more ‘popular’ music when I was a bit older! But what I did love was 60’s music and basically anything my Dad played in the car! I loved The Shangri-Las, The Shirelles, Louis Armstrong, The Monkees, The Kinks! I also fell in love with classical music and jazz…basically anything you can sing along or dance to!  But I think it is thanks to my musical upbringing and influences from all my family that now I have a very wide range of musical interest!

I also had not only piano lessons, but also flute, saxophone and singing lessons! I sang in choir and chamber choir at school and played in band and the orchestra. I also took dance classes and one of my favourite parts of this, was seeing what music the teacher had chosen for our new show or exam dance! Three of my personal favourite choices were Bjork ‘It’s oh so quiet’, ‘Move on’ from Chicago and ‘Mack the Knife’ – I will take any version of this song, one of my all time favourites!

So, what I am trying to portray is how important music has always been to me and I feel has become a fundamental part of who I am!  I listen to music if I am happy, sad, angry, stressed, need to relax, can’t sleep…there is a song or a genre for however you are feeling! I truly believe this! Therefore this must be why I get so annoyed when I can’t use my headphones – it has the opposite effect on me…perhaps I should start carrying spares…or invest in better quality ones!?

One final thought…pianist Vincent Corver commented last week on a video I put on my Instagram page of Andrea Bocelli saying that ‘Music is an art that connects us universally’ and I could not agree more.  It is one of the most powerful tools we have in life and one which can break boundaries and connect us all together in one moment!

Would you agree? How important is music in your life?

I leave you to reflect with Louis…

Anna