Okinawa City resident donates street piano to Plaza House Shopping Center

Okinawa City resident donates street piano to Plaza House Shopping Center

(From right) Takashi Matsumoto plays the piano he donated while Representative Director Yoshinori Nagamine and Planning Director Mika Tamashiro look on (December 10, Plaza House Shopping Center in Okinawa City)

December 29, 2021 Ryukyu Shimpo

By Takeshi Kishimoto


Okinawa – On December 10, a street piano was installed in the Plaza House Shopping Center in Okinawa City. This is the first street piano in the central part of Okinawa Island.


The piano was donated by Takashi Matsumoto, a doctor from Tokyo who has lived in Okinawa City for the past four years.


Matsumoto says he studied piano for approximately 10 years starting in elementary school, but hasn’t played in a long time. However, over the course of the pandemic, he remembered the healing power of music and began practicing at Shima Piano Center in Okinawa City. He also found time between work to visit and play the pianos installed in the Naha Airport and at Cape Manzamo in Onna.


Inspired by the street pianos installed in train stations and airports around the world, and wanting a piano to play closer to home, Matsumoto spoke with Yoshinori Nagamine, the representative director of Shima Piano Center. He asked the company to restore a used piano, and got permission from the Plaza House Shopping Center to install the piano there.


The piano is located at the shopping center entrance. On the day it was installed, Matsumoto himself immediately tried out the piano, playing a rhythmic classical piece with a grin on his face.


The next to play the piano was Natsumi Hoshino, a first-year student at Okinawa University who stopped by on her way home from volunteering. She explained that she had taken lessons, but hadn’t played regularly in a long time. Nevertheless, she briskly performed the Turkish March. As shoppers sent her off with a round of applause, she smiled and said, “It was a lot of fun. I can’t wait to come back and play again.”


Mika Tamashiro is planning director at Plaza House Shopping Center. She expressed her gratitude for the donation, saying “I hope that it becomes a place where anyone can come enjoy playing the piano.”


(English translation by T&CT and Ellen Huntley)


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