Woman donates 119-year-old gift to Sydney streetside

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Woman donates 119-year-old gift to Sydney streetside

Ever get a hankering to tickle the ivories while strolling downtown? In Sydney, N.S., now you can do just that. 

Valerie MacMillan donated her upright piano to a busy corner outside of Doktor Luke's coffee shop on Prince Street.

The piano was given to her family in 1990. Built 92 years before that, it's an antique. MacMillan considered getting a new model recently and her friend told her about outdoor pianos.

"In all these other cities they have all these old pianos outside and they're well used, and wouldn't it be nice to have one in Sydney?" said MacMillan.

She decided to donate it indefinitely to the streetside. MacMillan was the first to play it once it settled into its new home.

"It sounds really nice here, the sound is bouncing off the walls, and you can just hear a slight [bit] of it while in the café, which is really nice," said MacMillan.

She said its better that members of the public get a chance to enjoy it in its last few years. 

"It's either going to die in my house, or it's going to potentially die on the side of the street," she said.

'A conversation piece'

It's been there a week now and lots of people are stopping by for a quick play or a listen. 

"I think it's a great idea. It's a conversation piece, it's unique. I think it's fun," said passerby Michelle Bianchinni.

"I've sat out here and had a coffee and everyone that goes by plays a little bit, so I think it's great."

Five-year-old Talia Cordoba and her younger brother enjoy banging out tunes. 

"Because it's fun to play," said Cordoba. 

Doktor Luke's co-owner Julie Sutherland said it's generated some buzz and their customers love it.

"A lot of people have commented on how nice it is to hear the tinkling of the piano when they walk by," said Sutherland. "So just something new that makes people happy."

While not protected from the elements at the moment, it is something the business is considering doing.