The unique event, which will take place in aid of the Pianos To Schools fundraising initiative, will be streamed live on Mall TV on the 20th December 2020 from 8 pm CET. The concert will feature both individual and group performances from Czech arts school students, as well as virtuoso musicians Ivo Kahánek, Ondřej Brousek, and Klára Gibišová. Ivo has received several prestigious accolades during his career, including BBC Music Magazine’s award for Recording of the Year. Ondřej is a popular actor, composer, and a member of the band Monkey Business. In addition to these names, talented ten year-old piano player Klára Gibišová will also perform during the concert. Klára recently won first place at the Manhattan Music Competition. Other performers include musical protégés Matyáš Papp, Martin Bernášek, and Anička Čapková. All of the aforementioned performers attend the Prague-based arts school ZUŠ Jana Hanuše. The Christmas concert represents the culmination of the Pianos To Schools charity project for this year.
The Pianos To Schools initiative was created in a similarly spontaneous way to the events that preceded it. The Karel Komárek Family Foundation (KKFF) purchased 11 Petrof pianos, which had been sent back by a Chinese buyer in retaliation to a Czech Senate visit to Taiwan. The KKFF subsequently donated these Petrof pianos to selected Czech arts schools and primary schools.
Having originally been conceived in September, the project has taken on a new dimension in these last two months. It has revealed alarming inadequacies regarding the state of pianos in arts schools throughout the Czech Republic. The average age of pianos in schools that were chosed by the KKFF was 49 years. Under ideal circumstances, pianos should be changed every 10 to 15 years, at most.
“This was the first-ever statistical sample that gave us an insight into the condition of equipment in Czech arts schools,” explains Bohuslav Lédl, Chairman of the Central Council for Czech Arts Schools.
The Pianos To Schools fundraising initiative has raised roughly 1,8 million Czech crowns so far. Petrof Pianos became the initiative’s main sponsor, and in doing so, the company donated 5 pianos. An anonymous donor also purchased an entire piano for the Zruč nad Sázavou arts school. The Pianos To Schools project aims to supply 45 arts schools with new pianos. This translates to 9 855 000 Czech crowns.
Donors who wish to help the Pianos To Schools initiative can do so here: https://pianadoskol.cz/. Donations can be made in Czech crowns, Euros, and US dollars. The initiative is gathering momentum overseas as well. Donors can send their donations to specific schools or they can share their donations equally among all schools.
The Pianos To Schools Christmas concert will take place in the lovely Old Town Hall in Říčany, near Prague. Viewers will be treated to performances by Ivo Kahánek, Ondřej Brousek, and Czech arts school students. There will also be room for special reports from schools that have already obtained a piano.
You can watch the charity event on mall.tv on Sunday 20th December at 20:00 CET. For more information, see our Facebook page.