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Beloved Old Pianos Revived!

by Corrin Binford - June 27, 2014

Today’s feature on Wellsboro Home Page showcases the beautiful, hand painted pianos located downtown on Main Street.

These pianos have been donated and painted by members of the community. The goal is for this to be a way to bring the community together through music. The following poem titled “The Summer Fringe Piano” was written by Mary Wise to give a better understanding of the heart and hard work that has been put into these instruments.

“Painters wanted! painters wanted!” Thomas Putnam shouted …. “volunteers in need!”
To change the appearance of beloved old pianos, into a musical seed….

A seed, for bystanders, as the pianist anchors upon the bench,
While those of us who quit our lessons, sit back and wrench.

If only we had listened to our mothers, and our lessons we did take…
But now instead, like my sister said, “we must admire the beautiful music others can make.”

So the artists came to the Warehouse, one by one they did,
And they sanded and primed and laid out their plans and started to open paint lids.

At first we were so excited to put those colors on,
But, there were many nooks and crannies—- that we hadn’t counted on….

So we refigured and refigured, and finally got it right,
And we painted and painted and touched up spilt paint, even through the night.

Oh those painters, they used many colors….colors that were “oh so bright,”
And many of the “new” pianos captured the famous Wellsboro gas lights.

Coffee breaks were at 4 0’clock if you needed time to regroup or just rest,
While some of us had coffee “to go”, to keep us at our best.

“I’m just touching up a few more things” got to be a famous line,
“Well just how many of those things need touching up?” was a famous whine….

We were jolly old folks through most of it, and then sometimes it got tense,
We couldn’t even crack a smile, if a cow jumped over the fence.

We picked up momentum as things finally became clear….
And that’s when we saw the end of the tunnel, as it was near,
Oh, you see those final “touch ups” turned into “good enoughs” and smiles,
As we realized that our painting hands had put on many miles.

Each artist or groups of them, had a definite plan or idea in their mind,
And because they were all different, they were all signed….

Everyone was sharing with each other, wearing smiles and putting on cheers,
It was coming, it was coming soon, the end would soon be here.

Yes, you see we were getting to the end; the varnish would soon be the last,
The pieces of art were finally dry; we really did have a blast!

At the end of the day, we dragged our weary bodies out, and into warm tub waters we went,
So you see, at the end of the job, our bodies didn’t look so bent.

Then,…… on that Sunday afternoon, I did in Dunham’s restaurant await,
The coming of the pianos down the street, Oh the site…it was great!

Thomas Putnam was carrying the benches; the pianos were pulled and guided into a site,
One can only describe the smiles on faces…. it was certainly “delight”.

The positioning of the pianos was only a small part of the day,
Because you see those “seeds of music” were in position for one to play.

Oh yes, those pianos were played and/or hammered by young and old,
And many a story about piano lessons that were asked by us, certainly got told.

“My mom made me take lessons” or “my mom wouldn’t let me quit”
“And now I understand, as I see the smiles on faces, the faces I just lit.”

One young lady played “Jesus Loves Me” because it was fitting for the day,
And then there was the song about a “frog in a hole,” Mrs. Davis you certainly can play.

Facebook is ‘a buzzin…with the beautifully decorated pianos in our town…..
We all are happy that they are being used, to create smiles while they’re around.

So listen to the seedlings, or mature ones, play on our town pianos this week,
And don’t be surprised if the smile on your face goes farther than cheek to cheek.”The pianos will be here until the July 4th weekend, so come and play!

A dueling pianos performance will take place on Sunday at 2:30 p.m. at the Warehouse Theater in the Deane Center.

Credits:

Produced by Vogt Media