Tracey Kutschker works on painting downtown Salmon Arm’s public piano at Westgate Public Market on Wednesday, March 11, 2020. (Cameron Thomson – Salmon Arm Observer)

Salmon Arm’s popular public piano undergoes face lift for spring debut

Upright piano to be back at giant treble clef come early May

Downtown Salmon Arm’s popular public piano will be a more colourful attraction when it’s returned to its spot beneath the giant treble clef in early May.

The piano itself is becoming a work of art thanks to local artist Tracey Kutschker, who was asked to partake in the project last summer. The project is the brainchild of Bill Laird, local land developer and main instigator behind the 40-foot tall musical monument towering over the downtown.

Read more: The world’s largest treble clef unveiled to a crowd of 500 in Salmon Arm

Read more: Crews install enormous treble clef in downtown Salmon Arm

In the summer of 2019, the same piano could be found at the future site of the treble clef but was moved when the clef’s installation started.

So far, Kutschker has put in approximately 20 hours of work, painting the piano with a swirling water motif to represent the nearby lakes. A line of music notation will be painted across the upper panel in the Salmon Arms Economic Development Society’s trademarked Salmon Arm orange.

The progress so far on Salmon Arm’s downtown public piano being painted at Westgate Public Market in Salmon Arm on Wednesday, March 11, 2020. (Cameron Thomson – Salmon Arm Observer)

Kutschker, who also completed the mosaic at Ross Street Plaza in 2014, is not concerned over the prospect of her work being vandalized.

“The tiles in Pompeii have lasted a few volcanic eruptions and a few thousand years. Things can be repaired,” she said, adding she believes if something were to happen to the piano, a member of the community would come along and fix it.

Read more: Rocking video chronicles rise of Shuswap’s giant treble clef

Read more: Ross Street tiles tell Shuswap story

The piano’s water motif is to represent Salmon Arm’s nearby lakes. (Cameron Thomson – Salmon Arm Observer)

Kutschker is looking forward to more sunny downtown days when the air is filled with music.

“I just really want people to have fun with it; I loved being able to hear people playing it last summer and I’m excited to have it out there,” she said.

Bill Laird expects the piano to be under the treble clef for passersby to enjoy by the first weekend of May.


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The progress so far on Salmon Arm’s downtown public piano being painted at Westgate Public Market in Salmon Arm on Wednesday, March 11, 2020. (Cameron Thomson – Salmon Arm Observer)

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