“It calms the aggression”, “I saw the love there” … You told us about ten years of “Piano at the station”

The first was installed in 2012, Gare Montparnasse in Paris. We believe the piano is reserved for conservatories and theaters and we can’t imagine finding it in a place where rushing travelers and confused pigeons mingle. And yet, “Piano at the station” has been part of our scene for ten years. Today there are about sixty instruments all over France, from Aix-en-Provence to Le Havre, via Lyon or Mulhouse and it doesn’t nearly stop there: the SNCF intends to put some of the area captives. more in the coming years.

The operation reveals talents (thanks to smartphones and social networks!), Has been able to inspire vocations through various competitions and even inspire cinema – released in 2018, At the tip of the finger, with Lambert Wilson at the top of the bill, told the story seen and explored by a talent from nearby areas trained to shine in classical institutions. However, the device doesn’t just make people happy: these self -serving pianos are often victims of acts of vandalism or vandalism.

Are you a fan or a hater? According to most of the messages we received after our call for testimonials, you belong to the first category. “It’s a very good initiative, Judge Olivier. I enjoyed listening to the soundtrack ofUntouchables played by a traveler one day in Saint-Lazare [à Paris]… A joy! “. For others, like Elodie, it’s an opportunity to familiarize young children with music:” We always go to the station in Lille Flandres on the weekends with my 2-year-old son just to go. and listen to the pianists … look at him surprised and delighted! »

For others, it’s a way to make the station wait more tolerable. “It allows you to escape, which is good if you wait for a train! “Elisabeth applauded. “When someone plays, it eliminates worries, calms aggression, I find it positive that we can play in a public place”, exclaimed Louisa, who recalls several moving pieces: “A child trying to play, and she was happy. supported by a young woman who was more expert. It was a great time. ”The initiative created a bond between the passengers.

A tool that creates vocations

We also received testimonials from players at the train stations. Mattias described himself as “one of the most faithful pianists on the station”, and explained that these pianos are part of his history. “I was unlucky to have a real piano at home and by coming to Saint-Lazare every day, my level improved tremendously! I’m famous, I’ve been friends for years. I also found love there at some point in my life… ”, he confessed. Between the gratitude of passengers who are living “a bright moment” or who have lost their train, it is with emotion that he expresses his gratitude to us for an initiative “that brings people together and brings a smile “.

The pianos of the stations give a taste of music to Madi, 20 years old. “I started playing the piano at the age of 14, I have fond memories of the times I spent at the train stations playing or listening when I had free time after high school,” he told us. He and his colleagues set themselves up to the challenge of finding the best piano on Paris stations, from Saint-Lazare to Austerlitz. Judgment: according to them, it was Gare du Nord. “The grand piano in the entrance hall of the Eurostar lines! The security guards checking on us in front of the escalator are already accustomed to coming to watch us play,” he played. At this station, four instruments were played. made available for a while. Some have since been lost, damaged or damaged. “I haven’t been back to play a station since Covid, absorbed in studies, lack of time, distance …”, Madi lamented. Maybe one day he’ll find a piano on the way to a train to board and take advantage of the opportunity to celebrate this reunion.

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