• Durham OnAir

Durham University Donate Pianos to Local Community


Durham University has donated 18 pianos to local community groups across County Durham to help spread the joy and benefits of music.

The donations follow the completion of a project which saw Durham University become the largest All-Steinway School in the UK, welcoming several new pianos.

As part of this project the University was keen to ensure that its existing pianos went to good homes, where they could benefit the wider community.

Speaking about the donations Nicola Candlish, Senior Manager, Performing Arts at Durham University said: “We are delighted to be able to donate 18 pianos to groups across County Durham, to contribute to their work to help people in our community through the joy and power of music.

“Durham University is committed to having a positive impact in the communities we’re part of, and projects like this are just one of the many ways we do this, alongside things like our extensive staff and student volunteering programme, many events and exhibitions and schools and community outreach programmes.”

Amongst the recipients of a piano is RT Projects, a Durham City-based arts and mental health organisation which already benefits from student volunteers. Set up in 2009 by people who had experience of mental health challenges and who wanted to help others, RT Projects specialises in suicide intervention.

Speaking about the gift of a piano, ‘Beano’ from RT Projects, said: “[It] will open up a whole new world to people we work with, enabling them to have a voice they never knew they had.”

Also receiving a piano from the University is Enter CIC, which focuses on widening participation and works with young people from 4-25, as well as elderly in the community.

Andrea Flynn, Director of Enter CIC said: “Affording new musical instruments always provides a significant challenge for community organisations such as ours. 

“Therefore, receiving this piano is a true gift and we look forward to this gift inspiring young people, and performers in our community both as audience members and artists.

“The piano will definitely be well used and I look forward to hearing our hall full of beautiful melody.”

Other organisations receiving a piano donation include Tees Valley Music Service, Citizen Songwriters and Greenfield Community College. A piano will also be relocated to Durham Railway Station.