Play Us, We're Yours!

Friday, June 25, 2010 - 12:42 PM

Two wonderful events with WQXR listeners in one day: first, a convergence at the "Play Me, I'm Yours" piano at the Columbus Circle entrance to Central Park. Lots of people turned up to listen -- and to perform!

We had two renditions of "Für Elise" ("Dla Elizy" in Polish, which I noted while turning pages for a young woman from Czestochowa who brought the sheet music with her), some Brahms, some boogie-woogie, some Rachmaninoff, some jazz -- even a couple of original compositions. Performers included Paula Skutnick-Henley, a composer who happened to be visiting from Philadelphia; Victor Goldberg, a concert pianist whose girlfriend called him from the site and got him to come down; and New York Public Radio's own Dmitriy Krasny, who's on a mission to tickle the plastic ivories of all 60 "Play Me, I'm Yours" pianos.

Jeff Spurgeon and I also sang a little. You can see it all on the videos.

In the evening: WQXR's first event for singles 40 and over -- a wine and hors d'oeuvres party before the New York Philharmonic's magnificent performance of Lindberg and Beethoven. Terrific people, food, conversation and music that left everyone asking when we were going to do it again. The answer: soon!

New York certainly does have great music, and WQXR has great listeners. Thanks for playing us. We're yours.


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Comments [17]

Y'all did real good!!

Mar. 04 2011 06:37 AM
Brigitte Spettel from Mainz, Germany

Naomi, Du bist einfach wunderbar, insbesondere als Carmen.
Dies schreibe ich Dir aus Old Germany.

Jul. 09 2010 03:52 PM
Dmitriy from All Over, NY

Thank you to Naomi, Jeff and the WQXR crew. It was a great event, and it was wonderful to be a part of it. I still can't get over Carmen... The videos from the other stops on my mad dash through the subway system, as well as from my performance on this piano, are getting posted here:


Jun. 30 2010 09:44 AM
John J. Christiano from Franklin NJ

What a terrific idea! Vox populi applied to music!! A keyboard for the common man.

Jun. 30 2010 08:11 AM

I want one of those hats.

Jun. 29 2010 08:20 PM
Gayle Alstrom from Staten Island, NY

I listen to Jeff Spurgeon and Naomi every day on the radio. It was fun seeing them in person. I was amazed at how good most of the piano players were. I really appreciate the good videos, because the ones that I took came out really crummy.

Jun. 29 2010 06:54 PM
Gregory from New Jersey

Had a great time at the WQXR Singles Event. Enjoyed our conversation. The music was outstanding, the chorus and the soloists terrific. And I got to meet some very nice like minded people.
I also love the Robert Shaw DVD.
Lets all do it again.

Jun. 28 2010 06:17 PM
Kenneth Bennett Lane from Lake Hiawatha, NJ

As all architectual, social, artistic and spiritual ventures, there has got to be a beginning and a solid grounding. Naomi and Jeff, you are to be congratulated for "starting something." Singles are the MOST prepared for the adventure of interaction in all things, cerebral and otherwise. The audiences of WQXR and WNYC and PBS on radio and TV have much in common and should have such events as your "starter up" to express themselves on many levels. Wagner, Verdi and Shakespeare were activists at many levels, political, social and artistic. And THEY LOVED LOVE!!!

Jun. 27 2010 08:36 AM
Carol from New Jersey

Thanks Naomi for the opportunity to meet some "over 40" WQXR listeners. It was well worth the the drive into the City for the excellent music and interesting conversation.
I look forward to the next event.

Jun. 26 2010 11:27 PM
Michael from Syracuse

Naomi and Jeff: Thank you for kicking the stuffy out of classical music radio. Lead us to new places we have not been! We will follow!

Jun. 26 2010 07:21 PM
Yuko Ichihara


It was great to see and talk to you, whose voice is so familiar, part of my everyday life, last night at the singles’ event.

I wondered before the event if this (singles over 40) is the core demographic of the WQXR audience. How did WQXR decide to launch this event? Anyway, I enjoyed the lovely small party, and I too hope we will have next one soon.

Besides expectation for romance, I believe we can develop this group gathering (or ‘meetup’: ) as a listeners club, which would have active interaction between WQXR and listeners, performers and listeners, and among listeners. What do we want to do? Involve listeners in planning. Yeah, I raised my hand : )

Lastly, thank you for the WQXR tote bag and Zagat restaurants guide book as the prize. I love the logo – yellow cabs and pianos.

Jun. 26 2010 12:58 AM

(Do NOT attempt this at home .....)

Jun. 25 2010 08:41 PM
Leslie S. EVans

Yes it looked like a lot of fun. I am now going to play the piano that is in Von King park in Brooklyn. It's been years since I practiced, so it won't be a good as this.

Jun. 25 2010 07:50 PM
Fred from NYC

Naomi, what great fun.
Jeff, on target as always

Jun. 25 2010 07:12 PM
Conway Policastro from East Rutherford, NJ

All I can say is, WOW! Naomi you make a great Carmen! And your mastery of the castanets is truly legendary. And Jeff, you have a beautiful voice! Let's hear it for the Spurge! Sorry I missed being there. Looks like everybody a great time. Can't wait for the next performance from both of you. I am a WQXR veteran (forty years). Please keep those great sounds coming. Your grateful and eager listener, Conway.

Jun. 25 2010 06:22 PM
Amy Johnson from Jersey City

Wish I'd been there!

Your devoted listener ans $ supporter,


Jun. 25 2010 05:26 PM
Jacqueline Carboni from NYC

Naomi you are great as Carmen. Also, thank you for a great time at the first WQXR Avery Fisher Hall Single's Event last night. I met someone special, hope he calls.

Jun. 25 2010 05:21 PM

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