Michael Robertson has never taken any piano lessons before, yet he is still able to unravel a soft rendition of Beethoven’s “Fur Elise” by ear. In fact, he is also able to personalise the song with his own melodies. The 23-year-old first started playing the piano at a tender age of three when his family still had a grand piano at their home. However, after they moved out and sold it, he waited till he was either nine or ten before his mother actually bought him a keyboard. That was when he got right back into it.

Just a week ago, Michael was walking downtown with a friend when they passed by the Staunton Antiques Center. As they were walking by, he spotted a Gulbransen piano outside the door. He decided to sit down and play for awhile. “I was going to play for a few minutes, and I played for a few hours,” stated the Staunton native. Since then, he has returned a number of times and he also plans on returning a few times each week based on his work schedule.

For Michael, he does not see himself as a solitary player. Instead, he feels like he is someone whose music thrives in the presence of an audience. “I don’t do it for myself. “I like to play in front of people,” he said. When he was born, he was deaf in his left ear. Due to that, his perception of music is influenced in a different way. He described this perception as a certain sharpness in the way he hears music. “I can’t hear as good as some people, but some things I can hear sharply, like music. I hear beats and rhythms better than what most people would,” he explained.

Michael also expressed his gratitude towards the antique shop. “They say I can play any time, any day. Businesses far down the road can hear me. People come up here just to talk to me and go back,” he added, noting that the piano is placed strategically in the center of downtown, allowing lots of people to hear the music. For the full story, you can check it out from here.

In Singapore, it is rare to find such places. Yes, there are department stores that allows you to try on the piano, but that’s pretty much it. At Awesome Piano, we specialise in providing private piano lessons at the comfort of one’s home. For more information, be sure to check out our website.