PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — For the first time since the pandemic started, a big Easter weekend event is back live and in person.
Michael Allen Harrison’s “Ten Grands” returns to the Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall this Saturday Night. It will be quite the sight, consisting of 10 grand pianos on one stage with some of the region’s most talented musicians playing together.
“It feeds your soul,” Harrison told KOIN 6 News. “It is like energy that is exchanged between a performer and an audience. There’s nothing like it.”
This year, Ten Grands features local greats including Harrison himself, Tom Grant, Julianne Johnson and more. Songs range from jazz to classical to even a 70s medley.
Ten Grands is the biggest fundraiser for Harrison’s Play It Forward program, which takes in musical instruments and provides them to families who couldn’t otherwise afford them. The program also provides lessons and scholarships.
“Play It Forward is about helping a child find the genius within,” Harrison explained. “Very few of them are going to become professionals — but what learning an instrument does [is] it teaches you all sorts of learning skills. And the act of learning how to practice, you’re also learning how to learn.”
Of course, some of the students have gone on to great musical success. Some have even been asked to perform at Ten Grands.
Tickets are still available for Saturday’s show at the Schnitzer, which starts at 5:30 p.m. Visit their website for more information.