Alyssa O'Toole's project, The Hands Movement, does something very special: it takes music education out of private classrooms and conservatories, and delivers it to people and passersby in public spaces. The aim is simple: to bring the joy of creating music to others and, as it writes on its Facebook page, "raising awareness of the importance of music education and encouraging spontaneous participation of hands across the nation."
The premise is very simple: take a piano into a public space and invite people of all musical abilities and experience to learn parts of a song. The Movement began last year in Boston with an experiment that did exactly that.
"Together," O'Toole writes, "their hands united to play one piece in its entirety and in doing so they proved one simple, beautiful, and ever-necessary concept: there is no such thing as a musician or non-musician, too late or too early, or any amount of inadequacy or inexperience that can stop us from feeling the happiness of making music as human beings."
"Hands" showed up recently in Cambridge, Mass., in a public park.
"I can't tell you how special it is to see and hear first hand the difference the movement is making in both the music industry and people's lives," O'Toole told A Plus in an email.