Symphony of Peace

Audio coordinator at Roswell United Methodist Rob Albertson plays the piano inside a small chapel within RUMC.

The Roswell based nonprofit Seniors Enriched Living donated a hand-painted piano for the annual Pianos For Peace Festival, taking place through Sept. 22.

The Pianos For Peace Festival is an annual event highlighting community arts and making the arts accessible to all. A total of 88 hand-painted and donated pianos will be displayed around metro Atlanta for everyone to play and enjoy. After the festival, all pianos will be donated to Atlanta Public Schools, nursing homes, healthcare facilities and community centers.

As part of this program, Seniors Enriched Living will be receiving one of these pianos and members will have access to a donated and hand-painted piano for both education and musical enjoyment.

Jennie Carmical, the nonprofit’s piano artist, said her “inspiration comes from (Seniors Enriched Living) being a light in my life and in the lives of hundreds of seniors.” Her design represents light in many forms, including lightbulbs to signify new ideas, candles to offer light and knowledge and the sun to brighten our days.

Carmical, a retired research scientist and Seniors Enriched Living instructor, is a member of Roswell Fine Arts Alliance and has exhibited paintings at several of their venues. She has been active at Seniors Enriched Living for more than ten years and is planning on teaching drawing well into the future.

David Nash, Seniors Enriched Living instructor and pianist, will use the nonprofit’s piano in future Music Appreciation classes. Nash has a Bachelor of Music in piano performance from Mercer University and a Masters of Music in piano pedagogy from Georgia State University.

Seniors Enriched Living offers classes four sessions a year on topics such as history, art, music, theology, literature, current events, economics and more. Enrollees can take an unlimited number of classes for one fee. Registration for fall session is underway at www.selroswellga.org.

Pianos for Peace is using technology to enhance arts engagement via its festival app, which will allow people to explore, visit, and play all painted pianos throughout metro Atlanta.

Pianos for Peace founder, Syrian composer and pianist, Malek Jandali, seeks to unite and empower communities to grow through philanthropy and music.

Originally from Homs, Syria, Jandali has made it his mission to raise awareness about the humanitarian crisis in the country since the start of the civil war in 2011.

Jandali was one of the first public figures to speak out against Bashar al-Assad’s regime. Jandali performed “Watani Ana,” (“I am my homeland” in Arabic), which led to Assad forces knocking down the door of his parents’ home in Homs.

Jandali told the Guardian that Assad’s forces “handcuff my father, break my mother’s teeth and beat them both. It was a clear message to shut me up.”

The incident caused Jandali to speak out even more, leading to the founding of Pianos for Peace in 2015.

Now, the two-week Atlanta festival allows the community to gather for the sake of music and peace.

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(1) comment

Loop Kelly

There are other organizations that help those in need. There are street pianos which can be used by everyone to practice. Those who have a passion for music can improve their skills and maybe one day, they will find a new job based on their passion.

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