• Learn about the conditions that led to Frank Furness' most incredible masterworks, including the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts seen here, on Wednesday.
      Learn about the conditions that led to Frank Furness' most incredible masterworks, including the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts seen here, on Wednesday.

Heart & Soul: Pianos pop-up in University City

In Clark Park, a gnomelike garden; in Drexel Park a chicken car; at 37th Street Plaza a junkyard pod. These are among the eight artist-adapted pianos that popped-up in University City's parks and plazas on Thursday as part of a temporary, interactive public art project organized by the University City District.

The project, called Heart & Soul, features pianos altered and decorated by local artists, including the design duo The Heads of State, street artists Joe Boruchow, and Penn's Terry Adkins.

Like New York City's "Play me I'm Yourspublic piano/art project in 2010, Heart & Soul invites anyone to sit down and plunk out a few notes or offer an impromptu performance.

I set out to find the small upright pianos Thursday and watched as people discovered them, sat down to play, and got into conversations with strangers about the art and music gracing the neighborhood's public spaces. Adults who can't (or are too rusty to try) playing piano took pictures and maybe touched the keys while others channeled their inner concert pianist.

In Drexel Park I happened upon Kazia Nowacki and Sean Comber who shared this version of Heart & Soul:



The Heart & Soul is only around until June 17, so head out to see them in person.

About the author

Ashley Hahn, Contributor

Ashley Hahn is an independent writer with a background in historic preservation and city planning. She started Eyes on the Street for PlanPhilly in 2011 and was PlanPhilly's managing editor from 2015-2017. Ashley has lived in 12 zip codes that she can think of, including neighborhoods in Los Angeles, Chicago, Boston, and New York. She is a Philadelphian by choice.

Contact Ashley via email or find her on twitter: @ashleyjhahn.


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