News Column

Artist-decorated pianos, free concerts coming to Worth Avenue; Keys to the Cities to bring 18 artist-decorated pianos to PalmBeach County.

October 30, 2013


Many people have enjoyed an evening of piano music in Palm Beach.But few have had their eyes and ears entertained by a piano. Bothare the targets of Keys to the Cities, an event that will bring 18artist-decorated pianos and free concerts to Worth Avenue and otherPalm Beach County locations.

The pianos will be unveiled at 7 p.m. Friday at a kick-off party atthe Lake Pavilion, 101 Flagler Drive in West Palm Beach, when all18 will be played at once by musicians such as Robin Arrigo,Copeland Davis and Michael Yanette. From Saturday through Nov. 17,the instruments will be displayed at various sites. They will beplayed during scheduled performances by professional musicians andbetween times by anyone who wants to plunk out a tune.

"It's art in public places with a twist because you canparticipate," said organizer Kathi Kretzer, owner of Kretzer Pianoin Jupiter, which frequently provides pianos to local performingarts organizations. In addition to engaging the community in thearts, the event aims to build awareness for the new Krezter PianoMusic Foundation, which provides music lessons for underprivilegedyouth and performing opportunities for all children.

Seventeen artists were selected to transform donated pianos intoworks of art by Kretzer; Elayna Toby Singer, administrator of PalmBeach County's art in public places program; and KatieDeits, executive director of Lighthouse ArtCenter in Tequesta.After the exhibition ends, the pianos will go to local children'scharities.

Two pianos will be displayed at to-be-determined sites on WorthAvenue owned by Burt Handelsman, one of the underwriters. He agreedto assist because "one, they asked me; two, it's good for PalmBeach; and three, I was in the theater business for 25 years" asthe owner of the Candlewood Playhouse in New Fairfield, Conn., hesaid.

"From what I've seen across the country, some of the artists whocome out to do this are quite amazing," he said.

One of the instruments destined for Palm Beach metamorphosed intoan alligator wolfing down a fish. Artist Frank Navarette ofLoxahatchee makes his living building sets and props for theater,television and film, but "I've always wanted to paint a piano likean alligator," he said.

Silvana Frontera of Boca Raton decorated the other Palm Beach pianowith colorful abstract designs reminiscent of pop art.

Tickets to the kick-off Friday cost $100 and include cocktails,hors d'oeuvres and the performance. For reservations, call748-0036.

-- jsjostrom@

tentative schedule


Noon - pianist Robin Arrigo

12:30 p.m. - Robin Arrigo

5:30 p.m. - David Crohan

Nov. 7

5:30 p.m. - David Crohan

Nov. 16

4:45 p.m. Lynn University Conservatory professor Roberta Rust andher piano students

Each free concert lasts about 30 minutes. Schedules are subject tochange.

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