Have you heard that tune? If you’ve recently passed through Union Station, it might just be the public piano – a customer favorite which recently reopened for public play daily on a first-come, first-served basis (up to 20 minutes per player)!
Recently, Metro Art Presents curated five pop-up piano performances that showcased a diverse group of Los Angeles-based musicians, filmed live in June, to celebrate the piano’s reopening. The socially-distanced performances were recorded in the Waiting Room in June to entertain station patrons.
The performances can now be watched on the Metro YouTube channel – along with a message from Metro CEO Stephanie Wiggins welcoming our piano playing public back to enjoy the Union Station piano.
Here’s a shortcut to enjoy to each performance, in order of appearance, along with a little background on the players. Click on the photo to link to each player’s performance.
Jamael Dean – a jazz prodigy who has collaborated and performed with artists such as Kamasi Washington, Thundercat, Miguel Atwood-Ferguson and Carlos Niño, performing two original improvisations created live at the station, “Headed Weston” and “Metroplex.”
Dr. Donia Jarrar – an emerging composer, pianist, producer and interdisciplinary artist working across the fields of contemporary music, film, dance, theater and installation art, performing two original works, “Hijaz Kar Theme and Variations” and “Offerings”
Inna Faliks – the head of piano for UCLA’s Herb Alpert School of Music who has performed around the world, gives stellar performances of “Ondine” from “Gaspard de la nuit” by Maurice Ravel and Franz Liszt’s “La Campanella” from “Études d’exécution transcendante d’après Paganini.”
Brandon Coleman – this keyboard maestro, vocalist and composer is a regular fixture with contemporary luminaries such as Babyface, Donald Glover, Flying Lotus and Kamasi Washington’s band. Brandon represents a new chapter in the evolution of jazz and funk fusion, performing piano renditions of two original songs from his 2018 Brainfeeder release, “Resistance” and “Giant Feelings.”
Jonathan Montes – an up-and-coming multi-genre keyboardist whose Latin jazz stylings and production work has appeared on the television series “Jane the Virgin” and allowed him to perform at the Hollywood Bowl and Latin Grammys, performing original songs “Calle 12” and “Voyage.”
Metro Art Presents showcases an exciting year-round array of arts and cultural events at historic Union Station. From music and dance performances, film screenings and poetry readings to experimental and mixed-media presentations, the programs enliven downtown’s primary transportation hub for all ages.
Click here for information about how Metro enriches the transit experience through innovative, multifaceted arts and cultural programs.