SANTA ANA — In a cluttered South Coast Metro warehouse, 15 pianos were scattered about. On that Wednesday morning, the soul of Chopin emanated from one of them from the skills of Gabriel Stevens.
The 21-year-old Pacific Symphony intern and Cal State Fullerton music student was on hand for the last day of a seemingly unconventional art project: painting those 15 pianos destined for music-making throughout the county.
Those and five others — 20 in total — are just one segment of the Costa Mesa-based Pacific Symphony's three-part promotion that's part impromptu playing, part planned performance and part "American Idol."
The pianos, which were donated by the likes of Yamaha, Kawai and generous individuals, will soon be scattered throughout Orange County to comfortably rest in public places for the promotion's first act, "OC Can You Play?" They were adjusted, tuned and made ready for free by the Piano Technicians Guild.