Raining Pianos / by Sebastian Morales

This blogpost started not with pianos but with Fluxus. Through one of the links shared I came across Fluxus.org, and there a brief interview with George Maciunas, the founder of Fluxus. More than an interview it was an introduction to the beginings of the movement and what it really is about.

Sooooo... what is Fluxus? I'll paraphrase here: something like a band of people (often avant garde artists) that came together to liberate us from our monotonous lives. Fluxus is not just an art movement, more like a release of creativity into our daily lives. Bukoff defines the beginnings of Fluxus as a movement trying to challenge the social standardized notion of what is good, what is normal and, what is appropriate. Who is Bukoff you ask? In his own words: "The coolest person you've never met". 

At some point during the audio (15:28), Bukoff starts talking about Al Hansen and how he threw a piano out of a window and called the sound produced by the impact music. There was something about this scene that really caught my attention. Immediately, tons of memories of falling pianos came to mind, perhaps it Hansen started it all with some help from Yoko Ono.  

I then started to read more about the story. To be quite honest I couldn't find much more info than provided in the interview but there is something of that scene, a falling piano, that felt so familiar. 

The original event actually happened during the middle of the night and not much evidence exists about it. In one blog post I actually found an image. It looks like it could be from the 60s right? 

Baker House (MIT) residents throwing piano in 1972.

I kept searching and later found that the previous image happened many years later, actually at an event that now happens every year at MIT. This celebrated event is organized every year to celebrate "Drop Date", the last day students are allowed to drop a class. Big emphasis is made on the fact that the pianos are damage beyond repair before the they are completely destroyed. Here the clip from last year.  

Piano drops in mainstream media:

We have all seen pianos falling form the sky, well, at least on tv. The first thing that comes to mind are of course cartoons and mischievous villains with terrible luck. Here are two other examples, one from popular British show Top Gear and . 

 A quick google search gave dozens of results, here some:

The internet is full of people throwing pianos, whether virtually or physically, some with purpose, others just to feel "rebellious".  

By now you might think I am a little off topic, I guess where I am trying to get at is the personal realization of the effect of Fluxus in our lives. You see, just a couple of days ago, I knew nothing about it, I didn't know it existed! Yet, it had been an important part of my life.